Quote: “Baseball was one aspect of American culture that proved to have irresistible appeal.” This quote stuck out to me after reading both the chapter in Raceball and the article about baseball in Venezuela. As the US became an influence in Cuba, the popularity of baseball in the country began to spread as well as to other countries, including Venezuela. During the late 1800s, before Cuba fought for independence from Spain, its economy and infrastructure became tied to the United States. During the fight for independence, many Cubans went to the US. During their time in the US, they learned about baseball and brought it back to Cuba when they returned. In Cuba, baseball was a way to bring everyone together. All groups of people, men, women, young, old, etc., were welcomed at the ballpark. Cuban teams were one of the first to integrate. Cuban teams began to have many international matches against other US teams. These matches were a huge deal for the Cubans, and they did their best to beat the country that had taught them the game. Eventually, the Cubans passed the US on the ballfield. Before World War I, US major league teams lost more frequently in Cuba than they won. Cubans brought baseball to other countries, including Venezuela. Since Cuba brought baseball to these other countries, it was played on a racially inclusive basis from its beginnings. In Venezuela, interest in baseball spread rapidly throughout the country. There was no segregation, and it was played by men of all social classes. Gómez used baseball as a way to enhance the popularity of his regime. He supported the development of baseball as it spread throughout the country. However, he did little to encourage the advancement of baseball beyond assuring that the teams he and his sons controlled won the tournaments they participated in. Many businesses began to sponsor teams. In Venezuela, baseball was a sport that was seen as native. The impact of baseball in both Cuba and Venezuela can be seen today. Throughout the major leagues, there are many players who come from Cuba and Venezuela playing. Some of these players include, from Cuba, Nestor Cortes and Yordan Alverez, and from Venezuela, Ronald Acuña Jr. and Jose Altuve. These players can represent their countries and show how important baseball is not only to them but to their countries as well.