November 19th, 2009
05:57 PM ET
12 years ago

U.S. and Cuba practice softball diplomacy

Havana, Cuba (CNN) - A metaphorical timeout has been in place between the United States and Cuba for nearly 50 years. But that could all be changing with the help of sports.

Fifty-six Americans flew to Havana this week for a series of games with Cuban counterparts. The games are friendly, But these veteran players take their softball seriously.

"Well we sort of got a handle on softball diplomacy and big things start in small places and maybe this will be the spot for it," said U.S. softball player Stu Gray.

For the opposing pitcher, it's working.

"This bolsters ties between the two countries ... There's a real friendship between us," said Cuban softball player Roberto Castelo.

Players from the two baseball-crazed nations are all over 55.

"I'd like to see more Americans have the opportunity to come to Cuba and see what Cuba is today. And I think the Cubans appreciate Americans," said U.S. softball player David Brissen.

And that idea is gaining traction in Congress.

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Filed under: Cuba