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Pirates Close Venezuelan Academy, Move Prospects To Dominican

The Pirates have shut down their academy in Venezuela and will pull their team out of the Venezuelan Summer League.

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This move likely comes as a response to anti-U.S. political sentiment in Venezuela.

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Though the Pirates have not commented publicly on the situation, the instability and political climate in Venezuela is thought to have played a large role in the organization's decision to pull out. The move will also ease the organization's Latin American development system, as it will now all be centered out of the Pirates' relatively new academy in the Dominican Republic.

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The impact on the Pirates' efforts in Latin America as a whole should be minimal. Instead of having a Dominican team and a Venezuelan team for young propsects, the Pirates will have two teams in the Dominican and send all Latin prospects there if they're not experienced enough to come to the United States.

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For more on the Pirates, check out Bucs Dugout.

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Photographs by dizfunk used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.