PODIUM. Journal of Science and Technology in Physical Culture, May-August; 16(2):677-680
Translated from the original in spanish
A brief history of Capitan San Luis Stadium
Una breve historia sobre el Estadio Capitán San Luis
Uma breve história sobre o Estádio Capitán San Luis
Kety Roque Cala1* https://orcid.org/0000-0003-3190-1066
Haydee Elena Martínez Bencomo1 https://orcid.org/0000-0002-7369-9508
Moraima Pérez Barrera1 https://orcid.org/0000-0002-5774-2123
1University of Pinar del Río "Hermanos Saíz Montes de Oca". Pinar del Río, Cuba.
*Corresponding author: email@example.com
The baseball tradition in Cuba is centuries old. It dates back to the indigenous games, and with the very process of the formation and development of Cuban culture, baseball was established as the national sport, which, since then, moves passions among Cubans.
Before 1959, there were already baseball stadiums in Cuba, among the most famous of which are the following: El Palmar de Junco dating back to 1874 in Matanzas, the great stadium of El Cerro, 1946, today the emblematic Estadio Latinoamericano. In 1949, construction began on what is now the Mártires de Barbados, and in 1957, the municipal stadium of Isla de Pinos was inaugurated, which after many rearrangements became the Cristóbal Labra (Martinez, 2013).
The city of Pinar del Rio also had its stadiums; Atenas Park, in the 1930s-1940s, located on Sol Street and Borrego Park, on the outskirts of the city that remains to this day, but this facility does not meet the basic requirements to carry out games of the National Series, so from the 1967-1968 season, that the province had two teams: Pinar del Río and Vegueros, they played on the grounds of the Ateneo Deportivo, the current Escuela Superior de Perfeccionamiento Atlético "Ormani Arenado" and also functioned as host stadiums, the "Julito Díaz" of Artemisa and CVD of Bauta (Muñoz, 2016).
After the triumph of the Revolution, one of the first ideas promoted by the revolutionary government was the massification of sports as a right of all the people. Likewise, the objective was that the national sport, baseball, should have representative teams in all the provinces of the country, and at the same time, that these teams should have their main headquarters in the provincial capitals. In this way, since the first years of the Revolution, the construction of many stadiums began in several areas of the country and, within it, in Pinar del Río.
The Pinar del Río stadium was built between 1961 and 1969, on land that had been given by the Agrarian Reform Law to the Pacheco Martínez brothers; it is part of a sports complex planned by the Party direction in the province, led at the time by the Commander of the Revolution Julio Camacho Aguilera, which also included the construction of a sports school, a multi-sports hall, a motorcycle track and courts for field tennis, among others (Muñoz, 2016).
This facility has the following dimensions: right field 325 feet, center field 400 feet, left field 325 feet and has a capacity of 9534 spectators, bleachers 8101 and boxes 1433. It also has the still preserved dormitories, a large parking lot, cafeteria, dining room, electronic blackboard, transmission booth and a protocol room that now exhibits the gallery of the great baseball champions of the Province, with photographs and the trophy won by the team in the Golden Series (50 SN). It also houses the Baseball Academy, the Sports Informatics Center and other offices of the Provincial Sports Directorate in Pinar del Río (BeisbolEnCuba.com, 2009).
To select the name of the stadium, some names were discussed, but the name of the best man of Che's guerrilla, Eliseo Reyes Rodríguez, Captain San Luis, who fell fighting in Bolivia on April 25, 1967 and who worked for five years in the province of Pinar del Río as a delegate of the Ministry of the Interior, prevailed. He was a great lover of the ball and practiced it in his free time either during the day or at night (Muñoz, 2016).
As stated in the descriptive memory of the facility, the three palms planted at one of the entrances of this facility in the shape of a triangle with the vertex upwards symbolize the ranks of Captain that Eliseo held and the five flamboyant trees located behind the palms symbolize the five years he worked in the Ministry of the Interior in the province (BeisbolEnCuba.com, 2009).
The inauguration of the stadium remained for history, on January 19, 1969, when the National Baseball Series was already in its 9th edition; a ceremony was held where many thousands of Pinar del Rio residents and leaders in charge of the wor, this ceremony was followed by a baseball game between the teams of Pinar del Rio and Havana, where unfortunately the latter defeated the hosts 6 runs to 0 with victory of pitcher Heliodoro Sarduy and setback of Gerardo Hernandez (Muñoz, 2016).
It became the home of the provincial teams Vegueros and Forestales in the 60s, 70s, 80s and 90s of the 20th century. It is also the permanent home of the Pinar del Río team and was the permanent home of Occidentales in the Selective Series, in addition to Occidentales of the Cuban Super League. In 1988 the IV José A. Huelga International Tournament was held, and the XII Intercontinental Cup was held in 1995, likewise, its facilities hosted several matches against Mexican professional teams (Muñoz, 2016).
The history of Pinar del Río's baseball is unquestionably linked to its stadium, always full of its faithful provincial fans, many of whom defy long distances to enjoy live that revelry that is a good ball game. Then and now the perennial trumpet of Filingo can be heard cheering our team to victory. The shouts of the fans before a good play have shaken the city again and again.
And the people of Pinar del Río live with special pride the great moments of the ball games that have led our teams at various times to win different national series. It remember with love the players who gave their all on the field during the playoffs of many seasons where Pinar, sometimes with another team name, has participated and Captain San Luis, as a great father, has embraced in his lap his people and his athletes in those many joys.
Captain San Luis, as the home of Pinar del Río baseball, has witnessed the development of this sport in the province, which goes beyond our framework to be inserted in the history of Cuban baseball. In its field, many colleagues have developed who have formed the technical teams that have led our teams such as: Pando, José Miguel Pineda, Jorge Fuentes, Juan Charles Díaz, Primitivo González, among many (Muñoz, 2016).
In the same way, it has embraced its hundreds of players who have conformed in the different stages, the teams of our province, proud all of us who were born in the land of the best tobacco in the world and that to name a few we remember: Luis Giraldo Casanova, Alfonso Urquiola, Rogelio García, Omar Linares, José A. Contreras, Juan Castro, Pedro L. Lazo, Faustino Corrales and Omar Ajete, Yosvani Peraza, Vladimir Baños, Duarte, Reinier Capote, or Yosvani Torres, Erlis Casanova or Juan Carlos Arencibia who have given their all to put the name of Pinar del Rio very high (Muñoz, 2016).
This facility has also hosted international matchups against professional teams such as those against the Prince Hotel of Japan and Diablos Rojos of Mexico, as well as, it has hosted four times friendly matches with U.S. veteran teams (Muñoz, 2016).
Today the Covid-19 pandemic has forced it to a relative rest, only a few games without the presence of its public, but as it is known to be important, it systematically prepares its ground, is zealous in its preservation and continues to work for when this virus is completely defeated. Its thousands of fans will crowd the gates to enjoy the magnificent spectacles, perhaps already, with the modern digital screen installed, a desire of the fans that will make it possible to display team data, player statistics and news. This reunion will allow these spectators a better healthy enjoyment, satisfaction, because El Capitán San Luis is history and pride of Pinar del Río (Corbillón, 2020).
BeisbolEnCuba.com. (2009). Estadio Capitán San Luis. BeisbolEnCuba.com. https://www.beisbolencuba.com/estadios/capitan-san-luis.html
BeisbolEnCuba.com, (2009). Estadios de Béisbol en Cuba. BeisbolEnCuba.com. https://www.beisbolencuba.com/estadios
Corbillón, E. (2020, 24 agosto). Estadio Capitán San Luís, testigo de obras para montaje de pantalla digital. Agencia cubana de noticias. http://www.acn.cu/especiales-acn/69131-estadio -capitan-san-luis-testigo-de-obras-para-montaje-de-pantalla-digital
Martinez, M. (2013, 05 de agosto). La grandeza del béisbol cubano antes de 1961. El nuevo Herald. https://www.elnuevoherald.com/deportes/beisbol/article2024839.html
Muñoz, A. (2016). Estadio Capitán San Luis, una insignia de Pinar del Río (Cuba). Monografía. https://www.monografias.com/trabajos107/estadio-capitan-san-luis-una-insignia-pinar-del -rio/estadio-capitan-san-luis-una-insignia-pinar-del-rio.shtml
Conflict of interests:
The authors declare not to have any interest conflicts.
Kety Roque Cala: Conception of the idea, literature search and review, database preparation, drafting of the original (first version), review and final version of the article, article correction, authorship coordinator, translation of terms or information obtained, review of the application of the applied bibliographic standard.
Haydee Elena Martínez Bencomo: Lliterature search and review, database preparation, review and final version of the article, article correction, translation of terms or information obtained, review of the application of the applied bibliographic standard.
Moraima Pérez Barrera: Lliterature search and review, database preparation, review and final version of the article, article correction, translation of terms or information obtained, review of the application of the applied bibliographic standard.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International license
Copyright (c) 2021 Kety Roque Cala, Haydee Elena Martínez Bencomo, Moraima Pérez Barrera