Ozzie Guillen, Miami Marlins Manager, Apologizes For Praise of Fidel Castro

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Miami Marlins manager Ozzie Guillen is under fire over comments published last week in which he appeared to express his love for Cuban dictator Fidel Castro.

Guillen, speaking in the Marlins' dugout before today's game at Philadelphia, said he plans to fly back to Miami tomorrow morning to face the media and public.

He says he feels "guilty" and "embarrassed" and wants to address questions personally after sparking controversy with his remarks to Time magazine.


"I want to make everything clear what's going on. Then people can see me and know what I think," Guillen said. "I think it's the proper thing so people can see my eyes."

"I want to get the thing over with. I told the Marlins I want to fly (back) as soon as I can, and tomorrow's a day off. I don't want to (talk about it) in Philadelphia."

"I want to be in Miami and clear everything up."

"I want them to know I'm against everything 100 percent - I will repeat it again - the way this man (has been) treating people for the last 60 years."

"I want the people there. Whoever feels about it, ask me any questions. I want you to ask what you ask, because I feel bad? Yes. I feel embarrassed? Yes."

It remains to be seen if that will assuage the masses. A Cuban-American advocacy group in Miami, Vigilia Mambisa, has already called for him to be fired.

Guillen told Time last week that he admires and respects Fidel Castro for staying in power so long. He then said he felt sick over the comments in print.

He was self-aware enough to realize the response he'd get.

"No, not really. I talked to the media already in Cincinnati about it, and I expected this was going to happen," he said when asked if he was surprised.

"I feel badly, because I don't want to say (it was taken) out of context. I think it was kind of a cheap shot. But I've got to face it," Guillen told reporters.

"Like I said, I feel sad and (for) a couple days, I feel sick to my stomach, not because of what I did. Just because I know I hurt a lot of people."

The Marlins issued a statement clarifying that they have no respect for Castro, "a brutal dictator who has caused unthinkable pain for more than 50 years."

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