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Let the Good Times Roll

Let the Good Times Roll

Posted by Aimee Flores Jiminian on August 20, 2013

Image by Tracy Shaun  License

It is in 1955 that the Professional Baseball League is formed with four teams: Tigres del Licey (Licey Tigers), Leones del Escogido (Lions of the Chosen One), Aguilas Cibaeñas (Cibao Eagles), and Estrellas Orientales (Eastern Stars).

Also the celebration of the inauguration of the Quisqueya Stadium on October 23rd of that same year with the first games played at the new stadium. This markes the end of the "Baseball Without Lights" Era. Since 1951, the Licey Tigers dominate the baseball scene, followed by the Cibao Eagles, Lions of the Chosen One, and the Eastern Sugar Bulls.

The batting champion of all times Manuel Mota with a .333 average, Miguel Diloné with 496 runs scored, Rafael Batista in RBIs with 395, Ricardo Carty with 59 homeruns, Guayubin Olivo with 86 games won, Ramón Arturo Peña with 86 games saved and Juan Marichal with the best ERA 1.87.

Dominican Republic is the second nation with more active bigleaguers.

Today we are proud of Osvaldo Virgil, first Dominican to enter Major League Baseball and Juan Marichal, first Dominican to ever make the Baseball Hall of Fame.

Osvaldo Virgil better known as Ozzie Virgil, was born in the city of Montecristi on May 17, 1932. He made his debut with the New York Giants (today the San Francisco Giants) on September 26, 1956. In the Dominican League he played for the Leones del Escogido and the Aguilas Cibaeñas. During his career in MLB his batting average was .231 with 14 homeruns and 73 RBIs in 324 games played. Virgil opened doors for many Dominicans to come play to the Majors.

Also Pedro Martínez, Mélido Pérez, Ramón Martinez, Carlos Pérez, José Lima, Ramón Ortiz, and José Mesa.

The extraordinary hitting "Mangú Power" of Alex Rodríguez, Sammy Sosa, Vladimir Guerrero, Moises Alou and Manny Ramírez.

Let the good times roll for the Alou brothers (Felipe, Mateo and Jesus), Joaquín Andujar, Mario Melvin Soto, George Bell, Pedro Guerrero, Julian Javier, Tony Peña, José Rijo, Pascual Pérez, Tony -Cabeza or Head- Fernández, Alfredo Griffin, Cesarín Geronimo, Julio Cesar Franco, Damaso García and Juan Guzmán.

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