Yulieski Gourriel

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Yulieski Gourriel
20140608 Yulieski Gourriel Castillo , infielder of the Yokohama DeNA BayStars, at Yokohama Stadium.JPG
Gourriel with the Yokohama DeNA BayStars
Free agent
Third baseman
Born: (1984-06-09) June 9, 1984 (age 31)
Sancti Spiritus, Cuba
Bats: Right Throws: Right
NPB debut
June 8, 2014, for the Yokohama DeNA BayStars
NPB statistics
Batting average .305
Hits 73
Home runs 11
Runs batted in 30
Yulieski Gourriel
Yulieski Gourriel on March 9, 2013 (1).jpg
Gourriel batting for the Cuba national team in 2013 World Baseball Classic
Medal record
Men's Baseball
Competitor for  Cuba
Olympic Games
Gold medal – first place 2004 Athens Team
Silver medal – second place 2008 Beijing Team
Baseball World Cup
Gold medal – first place 2003 Havana Team
Gold medal – first place 2005 Rotterdam Team
Silver medal – second place 2007 Taipei Team
Silver medal – second place 2009 Nettuno Team
Intercontinental Cup
Gold medal – first place 2002 Havana Team
Gold medal – first place 2006 Taichung Team
Gold medal – first place 2010 Taichung Team
Pan American Games
Gold medal – first place 2003 Santo Domingo Team
Gold medal – first place 2007 Rio de Janeiro Team
Bronze medal – third place 2011 Guadalajara Team
Central American and Caribbean Games
Gold medal – first place 2006 Cartagena Team

Yulieski Gourriel Castillo (born June 9, 1984) is a Cuban professional baseball player who is currently a free agent. He previously played for Industriales in the Cuban league. A member of Cuba's national team,[1] Gourriel is primarily a third baseman, though he has also played other positions, such as shortstop and second base. The son of former Cuban player Lourdes Gourriel, Yulieski was regarded as the best player in Cuba in 2006.[2] At the World Baseball Classic in 2006, Major League Baseball scouts projected that Gourriel would be a first-round draft pick if he were eligible for the draft.[2]

International play[edit]

Gourriel's contributions helped the national team win a gold medal in the 2004 Summer Olympics and World Cup of Baseball championships in 2003 and 2005. During the 2005 World Cup, he led all batters with eight home runs.

He played second base for Cuba in the inaugural 2006 World Baseball Classic,[1] making the final out for Cuba in their championship game loss to Japan. He batted .273 in the tournament, with a .342 on-base percentage and a .515 slugging percentage. Coincidentally, later in the finals of the 2008 Beijing Olympics Tournament, he again made the final out by grounding out into double play against South Korea. [3]

He played for Cuba again in the 2009 World Baseball Classic this time in third base and batted for .333 in the tournament with 2 home runs and 6 RBI.

On May 11, 2014 Gourriel signed a one-year contract with the Yokohama DeNA BayStars.[4]

Domestic play[edit]

Gourriel had a solid season during the 2004–05 Cuban National Series, leading the league in hits and runs. However, he truly dominated in 2005–06, leading the series in RBIs, runs and triples.[5] His 27 home runs, which also led the league, were one short of the record of 28.[6] Gourriel's batting average was .327 and his slugging percentage was .676.

Reported defection[edit]

On July 28, 2006, ESPN.com reported that Gourriel and another Cuban national player, Eduardo Paret, had defected from Cuba and into Colombia.[7] Gourriel refuted this claim on August 1, 2006, stating that he returned to his home in Cuba immediately after the conclusion of the tournament the Cuban national team had been playing in.[8]


His brother, Lourdes Gourriel, Jr. also plays in Cuba.


  1. ^ a b "Unsung heroes bound to emerge: Lesser-knowns players will share Classic spotlight with stars". Major League Baseball. Retrieved July 4, 2006. 
  2. ^ a b "World Baseball Classic: Cuba's Yuliesky Gourriel". Baseball America. Retrieved July 4, 2006. 
  3. ^ "World Baseball Classic: Statistics (Batting Leaders)". Retrieved July 4, 2006. 
  4. ^ "Slugger becomes third legal Cuban baseball export". Associated Press. ESPN.com. 14 May 2014. Retrieved 14 May 2014. 
  5. ^ "XLV Serie Nacional de Béisbol: Lideres de Bateo" (in Spanish). INDER. Retrieved 2006-10-21. 
  6. ^ "Cuba scrambles to shine in baseball's Classic". Cubanet. Retrieved July 4, 2006. 
  7. ^ "Report: Cuban baseball players defect in Colombia". ESPN.com news services. Retrieved July 28, 2006. 
  8. ^ Rojas, Enrique. "Cuban star Gourriel has no interest in deserting". ESPNdeportes.com. Retrieved August 1, 2006. 

External links[edit]

Preceded by
Osmani Urrutia
Cuban National Series MVP
Succeeded by
Alexander Mayeta