Baby Bull: From Hardball to Hard Time and Back by Orlando Cepeda

By Orlando Cepeda

Orlando Cepeda loved a stellar baseball profession within the overdue fifties and during the sixties, yet after it resulted in the mid-seventies, his lifestyles fell aside. In Baby Bull, Cepeda stocks his tale for the 1st time. He displays on his baseball occupation and stocks his twenty-year fight to rebuild his lifestyles and regain his attractiveness.

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All of a sudden the police grabbed me and said that blacks had to be with their own people. Perucho had worried and warned me about such incidents. Later, we took our first road trip by bus, out to West Virginia. Each time we stopped I couldn’t get out. I couldn’t communicate, and I didn’t understand. Nothing made any sense at this point. The other black players could at least speak English. We arrived in West Virginia and waited for the black driver to take us to a guest house. The Jim Crow laws were on the books, so we were not allowed to stay at a “white” hotel with the rest of the team.

Pete had taken me under his wing. A mentor and sponsor in the best sense, he convinced my parents that he could arrange for me to have a tryout with the New York Giants along with four other promising Puerto Rico youngsters. He would enclose a letter to the Giants promising each of us $500 if the Giants signed us. If we weren’t signed, we would return home. Five hundred dollars doesn’t seem like much in today’s millionaire market. But for a seventeen-year-old from the Puerto Rican slums, it seemed like a million dollars.

So we headed to the ballpark, played the game, and headed right back. We managed to find a small motel with rooms located on top of the bar that we could stay in. There was one room left—with one bed for the three of us. Charlie and Frank Lee were older than me. They went out on the town. I just fell on the bed exhausted. The song “Blue Velvet” was being played continually in the bar room below. As soon as we returned to Salem, Pete Zorilla called me long distance. He had tracked me down to tell me that my mother wanted me to come home.

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