Thursday, May 31, 2012

San Francisco de Macoris gets new sports complex

The Dominican Republic opened the Mario Ortega multipurpose pavilion and sports complex on Tuesday in San Francisco de Macoris. Dominican President Leonel Fernandez was on hand to dedicate the new multi-purpose facility that will be used to develop Dominican basketball and volleyball athletes in the Duarte province.

This is of course of interest to the Dominican Baseball Guy because I lived in San Francisco de Macoris for four months in 2009, as I was following the Gigantes del Cibao Dominican Winter Baseball League team that plays in the city. Now I have no idea who the new facility's namesake Mario Ortega is, but I do know who Stan Javier is.

Former Dominican MLB player Stan Javier delivered a plaque of recognition on behalf of Duarte’s inhabitants. The Gigantes stadium is the Julian Javier Stadium, and Stan Javier is the son of the Julian Javier. Both were successful MLB players from San Francisco de Macoris and both are still hugely popular in the city.

San Francisco de Macoris has not had the same success sending players to the big leagues as other Dominican cities, so the Javier family is held up as representing baseball and sport for the city often.

The new facility is located within the sports complex area in San Francisco de Macoris. That is where the Julian Javier stadium is located, and there are also softball and baseball fields, a track, a soccer field, weight rooms, and a gymnastics training facility. Most are open to the public and/or used to train local athletes. The new facility will presumably be used as part of national team training of basketball and volleyball athletes.
Live action from the Julian Javier stadium in San Frnacisco de Macoris
Julian Javier Stadium, by Dominican Baseball Guy

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