Sixty years before Jose Abreu's impending debut on the South Side, fellow Cuban Minnie Minoso starred with the White Sox. Baseball's a different game than it was in the 1950s, but the 88-year-old Minoso is still able to offer advice to a young countryman.
"You know how to be the best, and don't pay attention to anybody here," Minoso said of his advice to Abreu, who signed a six-year, $68 million deal with the White Sox in October. "Then, always smile and give 100 percent."
Minoso said he didn't talk to Abreu before the slugger signed with the White Sox. But the presence of Minoso — who's a community relations representative for the team — as well as fellow Cubans Alexei Ramirez and Dayan Viciedo helped Abreu feel comfortable signing with the Sox.
Conversations with Minoso after he signed likely added to that comfort.
"He might have somebody say they're better than White Sox, but nobody — we're the best from the ground to up there," the venerable Minoso said, raising his hand above his head. "And they understand that."