For nearly a century, baseball has been a crucial social and cultural force in Latino communities across the United States. And, for just as long, Latino/a players have had a huge impact on the game. To celebrate this history, SITES proudly presents ¡Pleibol! In the Barrios and the Big Leagues / En los barrios y las grandes ligas, a bilingual journey into the heart of American baseball. 

Developed in collaboration with the National Museum of American History, ¡Pleibol! examines how generations of Latinos/as have helped make the game what it is today. From youth and community teams to the Major League, the exhibition reveals how baseball brings people together regardless of race, class, or gender. These inspirational baseball stories reflect larger themes in American history that connect us all, on and off the diamond.
¡Pleibol! is the result of close collaborations between the Smithsonian and communities in 14 states, Washington, DC, and Puerto Rico.  These communities have been working together to bring visibility to Latino/a history through baseball. For the past several years, Smithsonian curators have traveled across the country co-hosting community events, collecting artifacts and oral histories, and discovering and documenting the stories featured in ¡Pleibol!
¡Pleibol! will:

  • be a catalyst for host communities to showcase their baseball-related history and objects
  • share stories to illustrate meaningful experiences like:
    • how baseball helps one become part of a community
    • how baseball can unite people of diverse backgrounds
    • how fans can participate in the culture of the sport
  • allow venues to feature local stories of Latin Americans and their immigration experiences- baseball is a rich entry point for exploring immigrant integration and what it means to be American
  • explore historical themes which present parallels to current issues that immigrant communities confront now

Whether in the barrios or the big leagues, baseball goes hand-in-hand with cultural identity. Baseball diamonds have long served as a place for people to come together to express their cultural traditions. ¡Pleibol! In the Barrios and the Big Leagues / En los barrios y las grandes ligas will reveal how generations of Latinos/as- players, fans, owners, and managers- have helped make baseball the game it is today.
Please visit this Latinos and Baseball webpage to explore more images, exhibitions, stories, and videos about Latinos and baseball from the Smithsonian.

[Homepage image of Roberto Clemente meeting with Little League team- courtesy Roberto Clemente Museum.]