This past week a report surfaced detailing the Chicago Cubs’ Class-A organization, the South Bend Cubs, and their embrace for Latino culture heading into the 2020 season.
Fresh off a championship-winning season, the South Bend Cubs will change their narrative next season, choosing to become Los Cabritos Maldichos in five games to represent the Latino culture for Minor League Baseball’s Copa de la Diversion in 2020. It is known as the ‘Fun Cup’ initiative.
The initiative was created in 2018 to promote the importance of the Latino culture and its embrace across communities in the United States, per South Bend. Los Cabritos Maldichos is Spanish for ‘Curse Goats.’
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We don’t have to remind people where that nickname comes from. The Cubs are embracing the infamous ‘Curse of the Billy Goat’ which plagued fans for over a century on the major league club’s path to winning a world championship in 2016.
Chicago Cubs: A MiLB partnership
What started two seasons ago is beginning to morph into something great for Minor League Baseball. The importance of expressly embracing the Latinx culture across baseball is becoming more prevalent, and the Cubs are one of 92 teams across the league this season doing just that.
The pilot began a few years back in 2017, where 33 minor league clubs took part in showing their new identities across a slew of games. That number more than doubled last season to 72 teams. Now, the sky is the limit, and it is not slowing down anytime soon.
This season-long competition will bring together the 92 participating teams to showcase both the platform and the community to bring all people closer to such a beautiful game. The Cubs’ roster includes many Latino born prospects, so to showcase their culture specifically is a small yet impactful way to give back.
Chicago Cubs: A developing fan base
In a piece from back in March from Tyler Maun, he discussed the impact this initiative has already had on Minor League Baseball as a whole and what they hope to accomplish moving forward. The increased fan base over the past few years during the Copa games has increased from 12.6 percent to 24.4 percent.
In the 400 Copa games last year, there were 1.8 million fans who were in attendance. People love it. Not only that, it allows fans to represent their respective Copa teams with more gear, and who doesn’t love showing off their favorite team?
South Bend’s logo consists of the teams’ colors of red and blue. The head of the goat will be all red, with the eyes consisting of a yellow kaleidoscope pattern. The inside of the goats’ ears will be a lighter blue with a navy blue outline, and the horns are white with lines. It will be wearing a blue-and-yellow patterned collar with yellow and red bells.
Excitement for the Cubs franchise
It is a super cool opportunity for the franchise and South Bend specifically. With so many Latino born players across the organization, this will help them become the faces of the franchise for those games and honor their cultural legacy.
Last year, the Mariachis de Nuevo Mèxico finished as the inaugural champions of Copa. So the focus will be on them as the season kicks off in 2020. It is an exciting time for Minor League baseball, and for Cubs fans who do not follow the organizations’ lower levels, it is a great time to start next season.