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They're playing baseball in the Caribbean

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Somewhere on those hot little islands in the gulf -- the hurricane magnets -- they're playing baseball. Baseball America has been providing some excellent free coverage of the 2008 Caribbean Series, pointing out such details as a long-winded mariachi band holding up the game for Oneli's (and Timo's) Licey team.

After the mariachi delay, the Cubs' Carlos Marmol imploded, blowing a three run lead and setting the stage for Oneli Perez to get a win in extras. 4 batters into the 10th, however, Oneli had allowed 3 runs himself as Licey lost for the first time in the series. They'll get a chance to redeem themselves as they take on Dominican League rival Aguilas later today for the title. Should they have a lead in that game, Oneli will probably be called on to protect it because Marmol has pitched 3.2 innings in the series and the Cubs have mandated that he pitch no more than 4 innings.

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In the comments yesterday, I posted a link to a Baseball America blog post about a heavily attended scouting combine (of sorts) which featured a number of future bonus babies. Today they've posted about a different sort of combine.

Wednesday, however, was a little different. There were no catered meals. There were no large groups of scouts. The only thing this workout had in common with the others was the sound of roosters crowing and goats babbling at one another off in the distance.

[...]

As the workout was winding down, all of the sudden there was a commotion. A man dressed all in black went running across the outfield and people in the stands started yelling at him. Suddenly, two plainclothes police officers-with 9mm handguns in the pockets of their jeans-went running after him.

Apparently he'd stolen a woman's purse from a nearby plaza and was trying to make his getaway. Police ultimately apprehended him, and as he walked down the steep-some might call it treacherous-hill that leads up to the field, the back of his shirt read, "Prepare To Meet Thy Maker."

For essentially the entirety of this site, I've implored the White Sox to increase their overseas scouting budget. And with their $600K signing of the Silveiro kid, they have. But the linked post shows how it's possible to increase your overseas presence without having to completely blow the budget.

Spend the money on more scouts, better scouts. Conduct more tryouts, more actively search for diamonds in the rough. Carry that grinder attitude -- you know, increased effort to disguise your shortcomings ($$) -- into the scouting side of things.