It was 50 degrees under overcast skies at U.S. Cellular Field before a game this week when the four Cuban-born players on the Chicago White Sox – Jose Abreu, Alexei Ramirez, Dayan Viciedo and Adrian Nieto – posed for photos behind the batting cage holding the island's flag. Abreu, who set major league rookie records for most home runs and RBI in April, was wearing short sleeves, apparently as impervious to the chill as his torrid bat. Even Chicago's infamous wind couldn't penetrate through those ball-crushing muscles, right? Well, it turns out he'd left his jacket behind and couldn't wait to get back in, for the cold weather has proven a bigger challenge than major league pitching. Abreu has a hard time sleeping when it's chilly, and heat from a furnace gives him headaches. Sometimes he'll immerse himself in hot water to get quick relief from a climate that's decidedly foreign to him. "Never in my life have I had to adapt to the cold. It's tough to deal with,'' Abreu, 27, told USA TODAY Sports in Spanish. "But ever since leaving Cuba my mind-set has been to confront any adversity that comes up. … I can't wait for the summer to arrive.'' That raises the question of what the slugging first baseman might accomplish once it warms up, and balls fly out of the White Sox's cozy yard.
Jose Abreu's stunning debut likely just the beginning
USA Today | May 1