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Guillen apologizes for "I love Fidel Castro" comment

    CINCINNATI -- Marlins manager Ozzie Guillen apologized for his comments in the current issue of Time magazine concerning Cuban leader Fidel Castro. In the article, Guillen said "I love Fidel Castro" but later clarified the comment to say he respected the Cuban leader because Castro had managed to hold power for 60 years despite attempts against his life.

     As the Marlins were preparing to take batting practice Saturday at Great American Ballpark, the four beat writers who cover the team were summoned to Guillen's office, where he apologized for his remarks. The Marlins have also put out a statement which reads: "We are aware of the article. There is nothing to respect about Fidel Castro. He is a brutal dictator who has caused unthinkable pain for more than 50 years. We live in a community filled with victims of this dictatorship and the people in Cuba continue to suffer today."

     Here's the full transcript of what Guillen told beat writers:

     "There's a statement about, it's a magazine come out, quoting me 'I love Fidel.' Kind of funny (expletive). But it's not funny. I want to send a statement to the public. But, being more myself, I think statements is for the people that don't want to face the media and don't want to face the truth and hiding for what they did and what they don't did.

      "I think when I was talking about that specific man, it was personal. It wasn't politic. I don't believe in politics. I come from a place that has been very, very struggle in politics. I'm against the way he (Castro) treats people and the way treats his country for a long time. I'm against that 100 percent. I'm not crazy or stupid or ignorant to say I love somebody. It don't just hurt Cuban people. It hurt a lot of people, and Venezuelans. The statement I make, whoever got hurt or whoever misunderstood, or whoever can take it the way the way they want to take it, I will apologize for the thing. I will apologize if I hurt somebody's feelings, or I hurt somebody's thought. I want them to know I"m against everything 100 percent -- I repeat it again -- the way this man be treating people for the last 60 years.

     "The reason I say I admire him is because a lot of people want to get rid of this guy and they couldn't yet. It was kind of personal, not political. If you not read the article, it sound ugly, because the first time I read it I thought 'Wow, that going to get me in trouble.' I understand that. And I'm not hiding from anybody, especially the people in Miami. I just finished up talking to the Spanish people (media). With the bottom of my heart, if they want to believe me...if they're disappointed or upset at what I say, I don't blame them. But I live in Miami for 12 years. I know exactly what this man (Castro) means to the town.

      QUESTION: What exactly was the context of what you said?

      Guillen: "The guy put in the first thing, 'I love Fidel." And then I say, 'But this (expletive) still alive.' I'd rather talk to you guys personal. To me, I'm not a statement guy.

      QUESTION: But when you said 'I love Fidel,' what were you referring to?

       Guillen: "I said I respect this man because I respect Obama, I respect Chavez, I respect everybody because I always respect people. But, meanwhile, I disagree 100 percent what this guy been doing to that country. I respect him because, wow, nobody loves this man, nobody like him. And what I say in the article is that (expletive) is still there. But politics? I don't think it's going well with me. Because I"m not a political people.

        "But everybody's upset and sad about what I say. I'm a grown man and I can take it. But I want to let them know that I apologize. But in the meanwhile, I was not talking about politics. I say I love Fidel. But they come out....they say exactly what I say.

         "I can't even sleep last night. That's the first time I can't sleep at night thinking about what the day is going to be like today. As soon as I read it last night, I was sick to my stomach all the way to today. And I think coming up today, it helped me to help me go to sleep tonight after we win. I know how the Cuban people feel about this man. It's not proper for me to talk about this man. I was all over (expletive) Sean Penn because he talked about Venezuela. I shouldn't be talking about Cuba or Fidel."

       QUESTION: Anybody from the team call you and express.....

       Guillen: "David (Samson) just wanted to let me know yesterday. I say this is not the Marlins problem. This is Ozzie Guillen's problem."

       QUESTION: "Was he angry?"

       Guillen: "No, not at all. Because he read it. When you talk politics in Miami, especially about that man, you got a chance to put yourself in a (bad) position. I talk to Miami radio in Spanish about the way I feel about it. I don't blame anybody who be upset. I don't blame them a bit. I take full responsibility about it. But, meanwhile, I let the people know how bad I feel and I apologize to them.

        "I don't want to (issue) a statement, because a statement is like people are hiding or something. I'm not going to read no statement either. Everything comes from the bottom of my heart. I don't need to lie to nobody because...I can sleep tonight because I got (this) off my chest."

        "As soon as read that thing (article), I know exactly what I was going to go through. And I face it like a man."

         QUESTION: Do you think you'll catch some backlash when you get back to Miami?

         Guillen: "I hope not. Listen, I come from the same part of the country. We go through a lot of (expletive). I work for the people against Chavez in Venezuela. I mean, that's enough to say. Every paper every day I wrote against Chavez every (expletive) minute. They know exactly who I am, what I thought and what I think about Fidel and Chavez. In Venezuela, this is public what I think about it." 

Comments

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SUICYCO

We all know this guy speaks without thinking, but damn, what a clown! His efforts to clean up the mess he made are beyond funny. What the heck is he trying to say? Can't see how somebody can be a good manager if he makes such poor decisions with his mouth. Way to tarnish the Marlins' image. Nonetheless, go Marlins!

Nacional

What a moron. I can't understand how can anyone give this guy a management job. If he loves the old man from Havana, he should go there and manage their National team and go to work on a bicycle

cyrusgrey45

He'd better win games and championships; otherwise, he's out of here in one year.

bob

Yeah, we'll believe he works against Chavez after his Castro comment. He loves them both.

Glags

Clark/Manny what the eff are you doing. Stick to baseball. This blog is already bad enough with the amount of people that have nothing good to say about this team and the ownership. With the exception of a few and you know who they are most other commenters just come here and bad mouth the team. You aren't necessarily helping out the cause and these types of articles are not why I read this blog nor do I find them entertaining or amusing.

rboud

Just win, Ozzie, and nobody will care what your political orientation is in the long run. People are entitled to their opinion, whether you, I or anyone else like it or not.

Facund

80% of the Cuban recent arrivals are Castro operatives. This guy is one of them.

Remoazul

Way to go, with only one week (0-2) into the season. Food for thought: What if this idiot said he "loved" and admired" Hitler !! What would have been the reaction by Samson and the Jewish community? How many hours before this clown would have been shown the door?

chevyboy79

I wouldn't have apologized for anything...anytime a nation doesnt agree with the US of A or isn't a so-called Democracy, they are made to be villians...to this day we celebrate past Presidents who were so-called leaders of this country when Blacks were enslaved and treated far worse than what Cubans in Cuba are being treated...WHY DON'T YAH DENOUNCE THOSE PRESIDENTS??? The Cubans who don't like Castro are mainly the well-off Cubans (the doctors, lawyers, etc)

cheeca

He compares mr obama to chavez and castro, gotta love ozzie lol

Carlos

Off with his head. He is un comunista infiltrado!!! I never liked him from the days he played shortstop in the early 90's. I always knew he was a socialist pig. I will now for sure boycott Marlins games...

Deskboy

If you don't win, you are outta here. Only Sampson could hire a jerk like this.

PS Your president's putrid as s is turning to pus. Could not happen to a nicer guy.

Oh by the way, go rattle some chicken bones and smoke a big stinky cigar.

Good luck this season.
Go Marlins!!!

ClarityPlease

First of many ignorant Guillen comments to come.

FearTheTie

Stupid is as stupid does, and you can't fix stupid - this team is a Joke from the owner to David Samson, to the manager - maybe Ozzie can go manage the Cuban National team for his lover Fidel.... He can make $100 a month and live under the iron hand of the man he loves so much! And those of you who like Fidel yet live free here in this great country can all go live in Cuba with Ozzie, unlike Cuba, nobody is holding a gun to your head and forcing you to live here... Good riddance to all you commies!

Juan

Hey I love Castro, too! What's the big deal?

Clark

Ozzie is a BUFFOON ... I doubt that the Marlins will have a winning season with this idiot there.

caphayes

The Marlin's want the SF Cuban community to love this guy? He just put his foot in his mouth and lost that whole community. There is no apology that he can say to take that back.

cuban

Another reason to hate this team along with management heres to them losing every game this season hope no self respecting Cuban Exile shows up .

emmett  scott

i THINK WE SHOULD WAIT UNTIL THE END OF THE SEASON, THEN WE CAN MAKE ALL THE COMMENTS.

BUT FOR THE TIME BEEN LET THE SEASON RIDE

SEPTUM

It is a pathetic and feebleminded comment, but is just the characteristic of what is going on in this country today.

OnLine

I'm finally convinced he is as stupid as he looks. I was not much of a Marlin fan to beging with because of the stadium issues, now they are really a done deal. Moron has the right to "love anyone he wants : Castro, Lenin, I'm sure he is an Obama lover also. All which is not getting him "any love" in Miami. I hope if he is going to keep on talking on TV the media add
sub-tittles to his conversation, because the
Castro-Chavez lover just can't speak englis.h

sobe20

Ozzie doesn't give a rat's ass what people think of him, or what they think of what he says. Love him or hate him, he's a loudmouth, shameless, irrepressible fun-loving dude who loves baseball. Can't believe people are letting their panties get all in a bunch. Come to think of it, his big mouth will fit right in Miami.

Richard Nixon 2012

I hope Ozzie didn't buy a house. He's not going to be here very long.

mijami

I love ju mijami

Darrell

As someone said earlier...just another reason to hate this organization. Idiot Loria, boy Samson, $2 Billion tax dollars, bad faith barganing with our wonderful "politicians", (remember they didn't make money, not). I hate this team and will never go to a game or give one cent (willingly) to them.

Seriouslie

OMG!!! G-ay - @ss uniforms and crooked stadium deals DON'T compare with this level absurdity... UNBELIEVEABLE!!! IF YOU WON'T STAND YOUR GROUND OVER THIS - THEN WHEN WILL YOU??? PERMANENT MARLINS BOYCOTT!!!

Vic M

I'm from Chicago. I stopped going to Sox games when they hired this moron. When he was a player during the baseball strike he said "we no owe the fans anything". I would gladly give back the world series to never have his name connected with my home town. The great people of Miami have him now. He's an arrogant pig who can't recite the Pledge of Allegence yet he's a citizen? Utter disgust for this person. Wait til you start hearing from his punk kid.

chevyboy79

Great free country??? What makes this country any more free than any other country...free is to let me do what ever the hell I want...free would be keeping ALL of my hard earned money and not have to give any to the gov't...free would be me rolling a fat blunt without worrying about going to jail for smoking it whereever I want...GIVE ME A BREAK WITH YOUR FREE BS, AINT SH*T FREE IN THIS COUNTRY

JJ

Is his Spanish as horrible as his English?

wheerock@mchsi.com

Miami got him and Chicago is rid of him....

Sanford Hall

This guy is a loose Cannon, all the Cubans are gonna protest against the Marlins. He's not starting off on a good foot in Miami. He loves Castro and that other friend of Castro from Venezula.

Trouble already brewing in Miami, look for a quick hook, he's an idiot and doesn't speak english well. Next time do the interview in Spanish. Fuggin arse.

CanadaMike

I love Ozzie like he Love Castro... I like how he stands for his convictions and makes no applogies, but don't like his policial sensabilities. They guy's a loud mouth baseball coach... who CARES who he loves. Let it go and judge him on his win/loss record.

andres

why.doe.go..back.to.venezuela..we.cuban.want.to.go.back.free.cuba.

Sanford Hall

Ozzie needs his own personal PR person to back track for him all season. This dude is crazy, him and Samson makes a super combo. Loria gets what he pays for. This is only gonna fester over and get worse.

Cubans will soon start protesting at the stadium and nobody will go to the games. Ozzie will be shown the door by season end. I don't see how you bring him back next year after such a statement. First he profess his love for Castro and then he switches it to respect. It doesn't get any better than that.

Gino

So let me see if i get it. If you live in Miami, and you don't think like all the cubans (80 y/o and over), then you are stupid, ignorant, communist......

I got news for you. I don't think like you do, and I live in Miami, and i'm planning to stay here for a long time.

carlos zayas

I will not set foot in that stadium until they Fire Guillen! The Guy loves chavez as well, has no respect for the family of Cuban Americans who were shoot to death by Castro!!

Nacional

VicM you are 100% correct. His Spanish is worst than his broken & uneducated English.

tony

get the effn out of Miami, if he had said he loved hitler he be out in a second. Well, go play with you botty buddies Castro and chavez. BOYCOTT THE MARLINS UNTIL HE IS GONE!!!

LIBERTAD!!!!!!!!!!

Until that comunista bugaron Guillen is fired, we need to not only boycott the Marlins and their sponsors, but we need to boycott all sponsors on the radio stations that transmit their games even if they're just sponsoring other shows and not the Marlins themselves.

Cuban Season Ticket Holder

I am going to use my freedom of speech rights and boo Guillen everytime he is announced. I have season tickets this season but if he stays I'm out.

Mike W.

Ozzie, if you love Castro so much, move to Cuba. Then you can trade in your yacht for a '56 Chevy. You'd be driving a late-model vehicle, relatively speaking.

Go White Sox!

TonyCueto

Every Cuban American in Miami needs to boycott the Marlins and protest until Ozzie Guillen steps down or is fired.
This is an insult not only to Cuban Americans but to all Marlin fans!

TonyCueto

What ,a short lived welcome to Miami Marlins, way to go Ozzie. BOYCOTT THE MARLINS!

Gladesman

Let's open the homes of all of the Cuban-Americans who are protesting to see how much crap they own that says "Made In China." China has a far worse human rights record than Cuba, but I guess they think communism is okay as long as it's not in Cuba. What a bunch of hypocrites.

stupid cubans

Cubans of Miami Get OVER IT! He is a baseball coach. He is NOT CUBAN. He is Venezuelan who also has a communist/socialist president. To all Cubans, you are in Miami, FL, USA last time i checked. Not Havana, FL, USA. Everyone is entitled to their opinion (although sometimes it should not be expressed in public like that).
Guillen was or has not been affected by Castro, so there is no reason why he should hate him. His deal is with Chavez.

stupid cubans

Tony, why is this an insult to Marlin's Fans. I am not Cuban but I am a Marlin's Fan. I am not insulted by his comments. I could care less what he thinks of Castro.

NANDO

VIVA FIDEL !!!

Luis Pico

What will happen if someone walks in New York with a shirt that says I love Bin Ladden ?

Ozzie , that is the shirt you are wearing now, because your ignorant comments, but whatever , you can say whatever you want and wear whatever you want , the Miami community will hand you the bill , they are entitled to do so ...
We live in a free country... and like you said "I will take it like a man " Good Luck !

Alan F. Spaulding

Chicago dodged a bullet when Ozzie and his clan left us and it did not take long for his mouth to cost him....again. He got a golden job and immediately thinks this gives him a license to coast. What a shame, pretty much everyone else has seen through him.

Frank Nightingale

I feel bad for all of you Marlin fans. I am a Cub fan and had to listen to Ozzy's BS from the south side for years. This is just the beginning. He has a son that can't keep his big mouth shut either. Believe it or not his son may be worse. He is a loose cannon that can't and or won't be controlled by his father or the team. As far as baseball, he is a cry baby that openly fights with his general manager and throws temper tantrums with that pathetic broken english(He has been in this country for 40 years). When given his way the results of the 2011 season speak for it self. If you are lucky 1 year and out.

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