Must-Click link: The Republic of Baseball

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This made the rounds the other day but I just saw it this morning thanks to it being forwarded to me by a friend. It’s a photo essay from Michael Hanson of the New York Times during his travels in the Dominican Republic.

It depicts several scenes of young ballplayers working toward the goal they all have: to get signed and, hopefully, to get a bonus that will change their lives and the lives of their families. From early morning until late at night it’s baseball. All the time.

We’ve seen some of these sorts of images before, but these are particularly beautiful and poignant. And, like all of the other ones have become, they’ll be the first thing that will pop into my head when I hear some fan stereotyping Dominican ballplayers as lazy or undisciplined or any similar euphemism. These guys have faced longer odds and worked harder at what they do than most of us have ever worked at anything in our lives.