About 2 minutes reading time.

Son of Legendary Cuban Baseball Player Leaves Country

 Nick Martin - World Baseball Network  |    Jun 5th, 2024 11:47am EDT

Norichika Aoki #7 of Japan steps on home plate to score a run against Ariel Pestano #8. (Photo by Donald Miralle/Getty Images)

According to Francys Romero, Ariel Pestano Jr., the son of the former legendary catcher for the Cuban National Team, left Cuba on Monday. Pestano Jr. reportedly boarded a flight to Nicaragua with potential hopes of traveling to the United States. 

This departure comes after Pestano Jr. recently requested to leave the Villa Clara Leopards during the National Series in Cuba. According to Romero, Pestano Jr. still has a chance to continue in baseball at only 26 years old. “With effective representation, he might be able to join a circuit or participate in tryouts with MLB organizations,” Romero explained.  

Pestano Jr., a switch hitter who also boasts exceptional defensive skills, is in his sixth National Series season of his career. Throughout this season, Pestano Jr. played in 66 games during the 63rd National Series for the Leopards. He posted a .276 batting average, including eight home runs and an on-base percentage of .392.  

Pestano Jr’s departure is likely the end of a legacy following his father’s footsteps. Ariel Pestano, who played 22 seasons with Villa Clara, had a career BA of .292.  

Along with Pestano Jr., Leandro Turino, also a member of the Villa Clara team and a player in Cuban Baseball for 11 seasons, requested release to leave the country.  

Pestano Jr. joins the long list of Cuban players who have left the country for more opportunities in recent years. Yordan Alvarez, Aroldis Chapman, Adolis Garcia, and Luis Robert Jr. are just a few examples of players who have left Cuba in the past few years.  

author avatar
Nick Martin - World Baseball Network