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Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Carlos Carrasco Tells His Moving Immigrant Story in The Players' Tribune

Posted By on Tue, Mar 21, 2017 at 12:44 PM

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As the defending American League champion Indians home opener swiftly approaches (April 11!), Carlos Carrasco has written a poignant piece about becoming an American citizen and his love of Cleveland.

Writing for The Players’ Tribune —  an online outlet founded by Derek Jeter in 2014, which posts first-person narratives directly from athletes — Carrasco explains what it was like growing up in Venezuela and later getting signed by the Phillies at age 15. Moving to a new country without knowing the language was no easy task, but he says that his teammates and also his wife helped him to not only learn English, but also pass his American citizenship exam last year.

An Indian since 2009, here's what Carrasco, now 30, had to say about his Tribe teammates and the City of Cleveland.
The guys are so happy for me, and it’s been great to share this with them. There’s just this spirit here — from my teammates, to the people in the front office, to our trainers. It’s unbelievable. We’ve gone through so much together on the field, of course. But they’ve had an even bigger impact on my life because of everything that has happened off the field. Every day they helped me learned English. They are the ones who really helped me become an American.

Then in September I broke a bone in my right hand. My season was over. But I did get to be there for my teammates. A lot of people wrote them off. They wrote off the guys who had taken the time to quiz me during flights — even after games. They wrote off the guys who had written down the past, present and future tenses of words on pieces of paper for me.

I didn’t get that perfect ending of getting to pitch in the World Series. And we didn’t get the trophy at the end of it. But that dream — our dream — keeps going.

And as far as my American dream?

I used to think that it was just coming over here and getting the opportunity to play baseball.

But it’s more than just standing out on the mound. Or starting my first major league season as an American. It’s looking up into the stands at my wife and kids. It’s looking over at my teammates. It’s looking around at our fans in Cleveland.

And knowing that I’m home.
Read more about Carrasco's American dream right here.

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