Ozzie Guillen will apologize in Florida for Fidel Castro comments
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PHILADELPHIA -- Ozzie Guillen, the Marlins' controversial new manager, was scheduled to fly to Miami Monday night to address concerns about a recent Time magazine article in which he was quoted as saying "I love Fidel Castro" and that he respects the Cuban dictator for staying in power so long.
Guillen said he plans to hold a news conference regarding his comments Tuesday at the new Marlins Park. Protests were expected outside the stadium, which sits in a neighborhood known as "Little Havana" in which there is strong resentment against Castro. Miami is the home of the largest Cuban population in the United States.
"I don't want to make a statement," Guillen said before Monday's 6-2 victory over the Phillies at Citizens Bank Park. "I think if you make a statement, it's a bunch of crap. I want people to look in my eyes and look at my face and see what's going on."
The Marlins have Tuesday off before continuing a three-game series in Philadelphia Wednesday.
Guillen, a native of Venezuela who has made his home in Miami for the past 12 years, said the news conference is open to "anybody who wants to be there."
Said Guillen: "For a couple of days, I feel sick to my stomach. Not because of what I did, but because I know it hurt a lot of people."
When asked if he thinks the controversy will affect his job security, Guillen responded, "I hope not."
He added: "People can say whatever they want because everybody out there talks. I only worry about, can I sleep at night? The last two days? No. I couldn't sleep, because I know how I feel and I know what I believe."
Guillen managed the White Sox before moving to the Marlins this season. In Chicago, he often was outspoken and had a tumultuous relationship with general manager Ken Williams.