New MLB Rule To Require All Teams To Have Full-Time Spanish Translators

MLB just announced the Spanish-language translator program, a joint effort by the Players Association and the league office.  Effectively it states that every team must have a full-time Latin translator for 2016.

Most teams do designate a translator for Spanish-speaking players, but it’s usually another player who is bilingual, a member of the training staff or someone else in the front office. The new program will ensure there is one person designated as the team’s translator.

While having those part-time translators around is helpful, it’s not perfect. New York Yankees outfielder Carlos Beltran spoke out against the lack of Spanish translators in 2014, after Michael Pineda spoke to reporters without a translator following his ejection for using pine tar. In March, the league said it was working with the Players Association in order to add more translators.

Considering that such a large portion of the league is made up of Spanish-speakers, it only makes sense that this move is being made.  One can only wonder what took them so long.  It’s not clear if the new rule specifies a specific translator must be hired, or if teams are allowed to continuing using other staff or even players to fill this role.  However the rule does require that one person be specified, so I imaging that MLB will be able to easily track that sort of information and hopefully ensure that the role is being filled appropriately.


33 thoughts on “New MLB Rule To Require All Teams To Have Full-Time Spanish Translators

      1. You got it wrong, guys. It says right there. Full time Latin translator.

        “Gallia est omnis divisa in partes tres”

        I’m going to go apply right now. Better than engineering. Besides, I’m Catholic. What could be a more perfect fit?

        Liked by 1 person

  1. A recent job listing for an 1 year fellowship in the Cardinals FO required functional reading, writing, and speaking of Spanish.


    1. Not only do I meet those requirements, I “borrowed” a university computer network using a backdoor in the 1990s for a year to avoid paying for internet service. I was a very, very poor college graduate. I think that would meet the Cardinals’ other requirement.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. They aren’t specific….not sure if they want someone that doesn’t really know what they are doing so they get caught or if they want someone with actual skillz.


  2. This is a good step but what MLB teams really need is a stupidity translator.
    Twitter Error – TRANSLATOR: What Chipper meant was that this would be an example of overreach on the part of the Federal Government, not a conspiracy to create tragic events for political purposes.
    Rolling Stone Interview – TRANSLATOR: What Bryce Harper said about his Mighty Ducks Conway jersey is in no way an endorsement of the Anaheim team of any sport, or of the Walt Disney Company or any of its properties.
    Tommy Lasorda Rant – TRANSLATOR: What Mr. Lasorda meant was that when he was a pitcher he would have paid for the (expletive deleted) limo to transport Mr. (expletive deleted, read: BEVACQUA) to the (expletive deleted) baseball park so he would be sure to be in the (expletive deleted) lineup because he (Mr. Lasorda) would kick his (expletive deleted) any (expletive deleted) day of the week.


    1. Je parle français un peu.

      I could’ve gotten out of the language requirement thanks to my Spanish ability, but French was lovely and I wanted the challenge. I studied it for 3 years. Don’t remember much. My college program was intensive though. One hour of lecture and an hour of drills 5 days of week plus hours of lab. I once dreamt in French that trimester. “Ecoutez et repetez.” I still can figure out some written French but spoken French. Mon dieu! Lentement, s’il vous plait.


      1. I hear that. All I have is the French I learned in school, plus what I picked up from francophone co-workers during my military career. The last French aptitude testing I did scored me “functional” for reading, but my ears are too slow. Both of my kids have been in French Immersion since kindergarten, and my son graduates high school in June, so they are way above me in French-speaking ability.


      2. I took French in high school and college. I can read and get by writing. I can understand Americans speaking it, but not Frenchmen.

        I know a fair amount of Spanish because Texas.


      3. Yup. I didn’t say it, but being self-taught, I am also much better at picking up US citizens speaking Spanish than I am with native speakers. Same as with the French. Too fast, and too colloquial.


  3. Wow, I just figured all the clubs already had some on staff.

    Side note: All I remember from school spanish (eight years of it) besides Mr. Cortez picking his nose, was a class participation I was selected to perform in, circa 1966.

    Redneck friend: “Mi tio esta en Vietnam’

    Me: “Lo siento.”


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