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  • Mexico's President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador holds a news conference at National Palace in Mexico City, Mexico January 15, 2019

    Mexico's President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador holds a news conference at National Palace in Mexico City, Mexico January 15, 2019 | Photo: Reuters file.

Published 28 January 2019

AMLO claims by 2024, between 60-80 Mexican athletes will be playing in the major baseball leagues, thanks to his support.

Mexican President, and ardent baseball fan Andrés Manuel Lopez Obrador, AMLO, announced his office will endorse the 'king of sports' by introducing regional national baseball academies, which will be available to elementary and high-school students.

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“Sports are extraordinary, any sport, we don’t need to be jealous...I really like it, I’m fascinated by baseball,” said AMLO who is getting ready to kickstart a national baseball academy program.

These regional academies will focus on baseball but will also provide general physical training.

Besides being enthusiastic about the positive effects of sports on health, AMLO hopes that new emerging players will shine through and eventually become promoted to the major leagues.

At the same time - using baseball imagery, AMLO promoted a plan to stop the stealing of gas - an activity known in Mexico as “huaichicoleo.” He attributed the idea as akin to pitching at 100 miles per hour, claiming, " I know very well, it's a 95-mile fastball, 100 miles away from corruption and ending impunity. Let's see if they're going to hit that, 100 miles an hour, a smooth one, a straight line and with a ribbon and this is going to reach the budget, we will have enough budget to face the big and serious national problems," reported La Jornada.

The strategy would save the State nearly US$2 billion, according to AMLO.  

Regarding the future of Mexican baseball, the executive claims that, currently, between 20 or 30 Mexicans are playing in the major leagues, and by 2024 that number will grow to between 60 and 80.

AMLO has received support and guidance to design his baseball objectives at the national level by businessmen; such as Francisco Gonzales, the president of the Sultanes de Monterrey baseball team, as well as Alfredo Harp Helu from the Diablos Rojos of Mexico.

Recently, about 800 people gathered around a leaking pipeline to collect some of the precious fuel in containers before the blast.

The explosion of the Tlahuelilpan pipeline left a death toll of 114, according to the Secretary of Health.

Lopez Obrador launched a crackdown on fuel theft on Dec. 27 and ordered pipelines to be closed temporarily to stop illegal taps draining billions of dollars from the heavily-indebted state oil firm Petroleos Mexicanos (Pemex).

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