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Higinio Vélez

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Higinio Vélez Carrión

Higinio Vélez never played in the Cuban Serie Nacional but became one of its most prominent managers. He led Santiago de Cuba to titles in 1988-1989, 1998-1999, 1999-2000 and 2000-2001 in addition to leading his clubs to titles in the Selective Series and Super Liga. His debut as the manager of the Cuban national team was at the 1987 Pan American Games, and since then has won almost every major international baseball title that one can think of, including three World Cups and two Olympic gold medals.

Vélez managed the Cuban national team to Gold Medals in the 2001 Baseball World Cup, 2003 Baseball World Cup, 2003 Pan American Games, 2004 Olympics and 2005 Baseball World Cup. He managed Cuba to second place at the 2006 World Baseball Classic. In 2007, he became president of the Cuban Baseball Federation and commissioner of the Serie Nacional. He was appointed as Cuba's manager for the 2009 World Baseball Classic less than a month before the start of the competition. Cuba had its worst finish ever in a major baseball competition, tying for 5th after two shutout losses to Japan.

sources include: 2009 World Baseball Classic souvenir program, page 64

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