New York: Jeurys Familia is a proud and previous Latino Sports MVP award recipient. The New York Mets righthander continues to await word if and when the 2020 MLB season gets the green light to start.
As of Thursday, the players union and owners are continuing to review financial and health protocols. The more days pass and there is a dateline that gets close to not having a 2020 season. The proposals to commence the season are complicated and an eventual cutoff date to resuming next year could be a reality.
But everyone wants a 2020 baseball season which would be abbreviated. There would also be different rules and procedures. As they say, not the norm in a world that has changed the past few months due to COVID-19.
Familia is waiting for the eventual call. He and new teammate Dellin Betances are working out at a training facility in New Jersey. Both, of Dominican descent, have always had a bond.
Betances, with the Yankees at the time, is also a previous Latino Sports AL Relief Pitcher MVP recipient.
As we await a hopeful start to a new season, and with thirty years of awarding what has developed into the oldest and most prestigious awards given to Latino baseball players, Familia is one of those who remains a proud recipient.
The 2019 award recipients will be granted their honor at a time and place to be determined due to the continuing coronavirus pandemic.
Familia, in his first stint with the Mets had a NL league leading 43 saves in 2015 with a 1.85 ERA. He was a major part of a NL championship and World Series for the Mets with the Kansas City Royals.
A year later, it was a club record 53 saves. Later sidelined with shoulder injuries, Familia had a mediocre stint with the Oakland Athletics and was re-signed last year by the Mets as a free agent to a three-year $30 million dollar contract.
“ It is good to be home,”he said last year which also saw some struggles coming out of the bullpen.
Familia, though, like others who have received the MVP award, reminisces about the significance of this honor.
“It’s always in your heart and I am proud to be in that group with great players,” he said when receiving the award in 2016 at a local restaurant in the vicinity of Citi Field.
On that day. Familia was surrounded by youngsters who play organized baseball. They were guests of Latino Sports and wearing their uniform tops.
This writer was at that presentation. The smiles were obvious.
“I want to be like you one day,” said one to Familia. The newest recipient of the Latino MVP award took pride in taking a photo with the ballplayer and his teammates from a local organization.
Familia told a brief story of his days as a youngster in the Dominican Republic and goal of being that next and successful big league ballplayer.
He said to the youngsters, “You can live your dream also, Work hard and be dedicated. Be proud of your heritage.”
And that my friends says it all. Latino Sports will continue to keep all on the progress of dates, times, and venues to award the 2019 MVP recipients.
Stay well and safe.
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