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Pedro Jova

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Pedro Jova Pérez

Pedro Jova was a top Cuban shortstop and manager. He is a cousin of Luis Jova and the father of Maikel Jova.

Jova hit .315/.389/.394 in 17 seasons in Cuba, setting the all-time Cuban National League batting average record by a shortstop. He had 340 errors (4th all-time through 2008) and 4,200 assists (14th all-time) in his long career. Not noted for his power, he only hit 32 homers among his 1,598 hits.

Pedro won Rookie of the Year honors in 1971-1972. In the All-Star Series that year, he led in hits (18), triples (3) and runs (tied, 7). He led the 1977 Selective Series with 39 runs scored. In the 1978 Selective Series, he won the batting crown at .372 and led with 92 hits.

Jova made his Cuban national team debut in the 1978 Amateur World Series, hitting .421/.450/.474 as the backup SS to Rodolfo Puente. In the 1978 Central American and Caribbean Games, he batted .500. During the 1979 Pan American Games, Pedro slipped to .278. He eked out a .148 average in the 1979 Intercontinental Cup.

In the 1980 Selective Series, the veteran infielder led in runs with 56. Jova hit .333 in the 1980 Amateur World Series. He hit .324 in the 1981 Intercontinental Cup and .415 in the 1983 Intercontinental Cup. He went 0 for 1 in the 1983 Pan American Games and batted .226 in the 1985 Intercontinental Cup, his final international tournament appearance.

Jova led the 1987-1988 Serie Nacional with 6 sacrifice flies and during his last season, 1988-1989, he tied for the lead with 4 sac flies.

Jova managed Villa Clara for six seasons, leading them to three titles in a row from 1992-1993 through 1994-1995. He was the first Cuban manager to pilot his team to three straight pennants in the Serie Nacional. Overall, he had a .601 winning percentage in the regular season (247-164) and .607 in the playoffs (34-22).

Jova later became the hitting coach for the Rimini club in Italy's Serie A1. In 2008, he was appointed part-time manager when Rimini president Rino Zangheri decided to split the role among Jova, Christian Catanoso and Mike Romano (who had been the team's manager for years).

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