BOCA RATON, Fla. – The Cubs are interested in playing an exhibition game in Cuba if Major League Baseball can clear all the diplomatic hurdles.
President of baseball operations Theo Epstein confirmed the Cubs would like the opportunity to face the Cuban national team toward the end of spring training in 2016.
MLB commissioner Rob Manfred reaffirmed his hopes to stage that groundbreaking game during his media session at this week’s general manager meetings in South Florida.
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“If and when MLB approves that and the league moves forward, we would be one of many candidates to play in that game under certain circumstances,” Epstein said Wednesday at the Boca Raton Resort and Club.
“Clubs are allowed to say whether they would be interested or not interested. And we were interested under certain circumstances.”
The Cubs are an international brand that already features Cuban outfielder Jorge Soler, a star manager in Joe Maddon and a marketable core of young players that just advanced to the National League Championship Series.
“It would be an enriching experience for the players and the staff (to go) down there,” Epstein said, “and get a feel for Cuban culture and play the national team and start to get an understanding of Cuban baseball in a way that few of us have.”