Posts Tagged ‘Criollos de Caguas’

Juan bobo

The Criollos de Caguas

Show Renewed Spirit

CAGUAS, PR  –  The new manager of the Criollos de Caguas, Mr. Juan Bobo, has already had a great impact. Within one week, the entire team has shown a great new competitive spirit.

They all look like winners. Here is their leadoff man, expressing his feelings about a pitch.

Here is their catcher, chasing a foul ball.

Baseball Catcher

Here is the bullpen, showing their support in between innings.

Here is the entire team, inquiring about sleeping accomodations during a double header.

Baseball Brawl

Juan Bobo clearly knows how to motivate a team. We can’t wait for the Puerto Rico winter league season to begin!

Complete coverage of the Criollos de Caguas will continue on these pages.

The Chronicles of Juan Bobo

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Juan bobo

The Criollos de Caguas

CAGUAS, PR  –  In preparation for its 2014 season, the Puerto Rican winter baseball league just announced the new manager of the Criollos de Caguas.

As you may have guessed, the new manager is Juan Bobo. The outgoing manager, Adam Clayton Powell VII, was caught by surprise.

Surprised PowellPowell was surprised

According to Powell, “Juan Bobo is a fraud. He knows nothing about baseball. The only way he got this job, was by bribing people in Caguas.”

Santa BoboBobo bribing people in Caguas

Bobo’s first job will be to assist Don Q, the Criollos starting pitcher, with the rehabilitation of his right shoulder.

DrunkDon Q in rehab

Complete coverage of the Criollos de Caguas  and Don Q’s rehabilitation will continue on these pages.

The Chronicles of Juan Bobo

Juan bobo

The Mother of All Parties

After 621 innings the Criollos de Caguas finally beat the Barones de Barceloneta, to win the longest game in baseball history.  As manager of the Criollos, Juan Bobo went one step further: he organized what, to this day, is the most famous party in Puerto Rican history.

The word went out immediately and preparations lasted for three days. Old Man Oye dusted his phonograph and picked out his loudest records. Mama Chema baked a tub of beans.  Pots of pork fried rice, basins of steaming shrimp, buckets of cuchifritos kept streaming into Juan’s house. Perníl Rivera, the owner of El Pollo Diablo, killed ten of his largest chickens.

One of the ten chickens

And then the wine came, gallons and gallons of it. Juan filled the washing machine with coquito. Don Q found a barrel of sugarcane rum, Choco found twenty cases of Corona, and a Budweiser truck delivered eight ice-cold kegs.

The party became so famous, that Juan Bobo even held a press conference over it.

Juan Bobo PartyJuan Bobo announces his party

The party lasted till Saturday, Sunday or Monday – no one is really sure – but what happened there was reported in the San Juan Star, and became a legend throughout Puerto Rico.

Within two hours the party passed into legend. No one could ever give a better one. Such a thing would be unthinkable. Never in the history of Puerto Rico had there been so many fights.

Juan Bobo tried to stop it, but no one would listen. They just wanted to fight.

Juan bobo2“No mas!” said Juan Bobo

The Barónes grabbed Choco by the throat and demanded their money back. Pitrós heaved three Barónes through the front window. Perico sold bad drugs in the bathroom and they stuffed his head in a toilet. El Sapo flew out the front door. Wilson bit their pitcher’s ear. Flaco lost a tooth. No self-respecting man came out of that night without some glorious cuts and bruises. 

The women could not stop laughing. Oh, the laughter of the women!  Thin and delicate and sweet as spun glass, as they kicked whichever man happened to be down. A few ladylike shrieks of protest also fluttered down from the upstairs rooms.

But the party took a wrong turn, when the sheriff shot and killed Adam Clayton Powell VI.

The Chronicles of Juan Bobo

Juan bobo

Abraham Lincoln, Vampire Hunter

A new movie was released in Puerto Rico which revealed that Abraham Lincoln was a world-class vampire hunter, even during the Civil War. This was news to Juan Bobo – especially when schoolchildren started talking about it in McDonald’s, as though it had been actual history.

The kids didn’t question the existence of vampires – just the notion that Abraham Lincoln chased them around, on a horse, while passing Civil Rights legislation and conducting a war.

But then came the real shock. Some fake psychic in San Juan started calling himself “Abraham Lincoln, Ghost Hunter,” and cutting into Juan’s exorcism business. So just like Honest Abe, Juan went to war: he dressed up like Abraham Lincoln and embarked on a twelve-town “Freedom Tour.” 

Lincoln Bobo

 

In less than one month, Juan liberated hundreds of ghosts from their earthly bonds. He even recited the Gettysburg Address before killing each one.

Four score and seven years ago

I told these ghosts

To get the hell out of Puerto Rico

And just like that, Juan’s business was back on track. He was killing ten ghosts a day.

In Brazil, Paulo Coelho discussed the metaphysics of “killing” a ghost; in San Juan

and Ponce, the Walmart stores broke out a “Juan Bobo Ghostbuster” line of clothing.

Juan Bobo GSIJuan Bobo, Ghostbuster

Meanwhile Juan Bobo’s baseball team, the Criollos de Caguas, lost sixteen games in a row.

The Chronicles of Juan Bobo

Juan bobo

Juan Bobo, Filadelfo

and His Magic Accordion

Every day, before every game, the Criollos de Caguas had to awaken Filadelfo the accordion player. He was always snoring in right field, wrapped in a tattered blanket, sleeping off a drunk.

Filadelfo had toured with Mantovani, but now he played only one tune when intoxicated – En Mi Viejo San Juan. When very drunk he also remembered fragments of Mendelssohn’s Spring Song.

Filadelfo when sober

As the only high-brow musician in the whole town, Filadelfo possessed a just celebrity. He was brilliant and industrious – his sons and daughters were innumerable – but the artistic temperament was too much for him.

On February 9, 2012, Filadelfo was passed out, and draped like an “L” over a bench. He refused to wake up. But the mayor of Caguas was there for  the big game, so Juan Bobo had no choice, and he ordered the ground crew to throw a bucket of ice water on Filadelfo.

DrunkHe refused to wake up

The accordionist sprang up in a rage, and placed a curse on both teams. “You’re all in a hurry?” he yelled. “Okay, so keep on hurrying!”

From that point on, the baseball game became very strange. Every batter on both teams connected with the first pitch, for either an immediate hit or an immediate out. 

They hit every pitch

The game proceeded at lightning speed and, by the end of the day, the game was tied at 24-24 after 59 innings. The Criollos pitcher Don Q was becoming a nervous wreck, and started drinking Bacardi in the dugout.

Everyone in the stadium had heard Filadelfo, and they started whispering that “the curse of Filadelfo” had taken over the game.

Juan Bobo had never seen anything like it.

The Chronicles of Juan Bobo

Juan bobo

Juan Bobo and His   

Baseball Stadium

Criollos de Caguas had a very colorful baseball stadium.

Fifty skinny boys sat on the right field wall. They shimmied up a palm tree and waved dozens of broomsticks with butterfly nets on the end. They rarely got a ball, though. The Criollos de Caguas had not hit a home run in two years.

The field was full of holes, ruts, and countless other hazards. An ant colony wiggled under first base. Insects bigger than silver dollars bounced off the bulbs and zoomed around all the players. Two panels behind home plate were covered with cardboard. 

Out in right field, just below the butterfly nets, a sloping mound of red dirt served as the outfield fence and behind it (to keep out the boys) a twelve-foot wall of barbed wire topped a pile of garbage cans filled with broken beer bottles and a narrow hole, partially covered with Johnson grass, that was home to a rattlesnake.

The outfield snake 

Way out in left field lay Filadelfo the accordion player, wrapped in a tattered blanket, sleeping off a drunk. Filadelfo had toured with Mantovani, but now he played only one tune when intoxicated – En Mi Viejo San Juan. When very drunk he also remembered fragments of Mendelssohn’s Spring Song.

Filadelfo was the starting pitcher’s twin brother, and people often confused the two.

DrunkFiladelfo the accordion player 

The field was so run down, and the Criollos lost so many games, that people told Juan Bobo he should quit trying to manage them and find a real job.

But Juan loved baseball. It was a great game for redemption, since it was so full of failure. Just like life. 

The Chronicles of Juan Bobo

Juan bobo

Juan Bobo and His    

Criollos de Caguas 

Juan Bobo managed the Criollos de Caguas, the worst team in the Puerto Rico winter baseball league. The Criollos had won fourteen Puerto Rico pennants and three Caribbean World Series, but you’d never know it by this bunch.

Don Q, the starting pitcher, had a 98 mph fast ball but was usually half-drunk and utterly unpredictable. 

DrunkThe starting pitcher Don Q 

Pitrós, the catcher, had a huge family to feed and was the hardest working Criollo. He had two concussions and four cracked ribs from defending home plate

Pitrós saves a run, cracks a rib

Flaco Navaja, the first baseman, was very mean-tempered and known to stab base runners.

Flaco feels he was safe    

Perico had a cocaine habit and autonomic dysreflexia, which sent him into seizures at shortstop. This was helpful in hit and run situations but otherwise useless.

Perico the shortstop     

Wilson the third baseman had no arm, was the worst fielder on the team, but had an uncanny ability to steal running signals and the other team’s equipment. Thanks to Wilson, most of the games ended in an all-out brawl.

Wilson steals home, then home plate, then a catcher’s mitt

The Criollos didn’t mind getting arrested because the sheriff of Caguas served good wine in his prison. But Juan Bobo was running out of bail money.

The Chronicles of Juan Bobo

Juan bobo

Juan Bobo Throws the    

Mother of All Parties

After 621 innings the Criollos de Caguas finally beat the Barones de Barceloneta, to win the longest game in baseball history.  As manager of the Criollos, Juan Bobo went one step further: he organized what, to this day, is the most famous party in Puerto Rican history.
 
The word went out immediately and preparations lasted for three days. Old Man Oye dusted his phonograph and picked out his loudest records. Mama Chema baked a tub of beans.  Pots of pork fried rice, basins of steaming shrimp, buckets of cuchifritos kept streaming into Juan’s house. Perníl Rivera, the owner of El Pollo Diablo, killed ten of his largest chickens.
 

One of the ten chickens

And then the wine came, gallons and gallons of it. Juan filled the washing machine with coquito. Don Q found a barrel of sugarcane rum, Choco found twenty cases of Corona, and a Budweiser truck delivered eight ice-cold kegs.
 
The party became so famous, that Juan Bobo even held a press conference over it.
 

Juan Bobo PartyJuan Bobo announces his party

The party lasted till Saturday, Sunday or Monday – no one is really sure – but what happened there was reported in the San Juan Star, and became a legend throughout Puerto Rico.
 
Within two hours the party passed into legend. No one could ever give a better one. Such a thing would be unthinkable. Never in the history of Puerto Rico had there been so many fights.
 
Juan Bobo tried to stop it, but no one would listen. They just wanted to fight.
 

Juan bobo2“No mas!” said Juan Bobo

The Barónes grabbed Choco by the throat and demanded their money back. Pitrós heaved three Barónes through the front window. Perico sold bad drugs in the bathroom and they stuffed his head in a toilet. El Sapo flew out the front door. Wilson bit their pitcher’s ear. Flaco lost a tooth. No self-respecting man came out of that night without some glorious cuts and bruises.
 

The women could not stop laughing. Oh, the laughter of the women!  Thin and delicate and sweet as spun glass, as they kicked whichever man happened to be down. A few ladylike shrieks of protest also fluttered down from the upstairs rooms. 
 
But the party took a wrong turn, when the sheriff shot and killed Adam Clayton Powell VI.
 

The Chronicles of Juan Bobo

Juan bobo

Juan Bobo History Lesson:

Luis Muñoz Marín

Luis Muñoz Marín was the first democratically elected governor of Puerto Rico. His father was a distinguished journalist and island politician, and his grandfather was mayor of the town of Barranquitas.
 
200

200 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

Some people claim he sold out the independence of Puerto Rico, in order to become governor.
 
Others say he was a great visionary, who helped pull Puerto Rico through the Great Depression through the “Operation Bootstrap” program, and other economic reforms.
 
In any event, the U.S. named a postage stamp after him. Here is a short newsreel of Luis Muñoz Marín, delivering a passionate speech:
 

 

The Chronicles of Juan Bobo

 

 

Juan bobo

Juan Bobo History Lesson:

Operation Portrex

A few months before the Korean War, the U.S. staged the largest war games in American history.
 
Known as “Operation Portrex,” it sent 32,000 soldiers of the 82nd U.S. Airborne to invade the island of Vieques, which was defended by the 65th Infantry Division of Puerto Rico, also known as the “Borinqueneers,” who had only 4,000 soldiers.
 

The 82nd invades Vieques

Despite these 8:1 odds, and despite a coordinated land-air-sea assault, the Borinqueneers held the island.
 
You can view a newsreel about Operation Portrex here:
 

 
The newsreel has one fundamental inaccuracy. It claims that the 82nd succeeded in their assault. In fact, they failed. The historical record is clear and unambiguous about this.
 
But taxpayers need to be reassured.
 

The Chronicles of Juan Bobo