Yulieski Gourriel Castillo (born June 9, 1984), also known as “La Pia,” is a Cuban professional baseball player who plays first base for the Houston Astros.
His past teams in Nippon Professional Baseball were Sancti Spiritus and Yokohama DeNA BayStars (NPB). Gurriel earned a gold medal for Cuba at the 2004 Summer Olympics as a part of the national team.
He’s always been a versatile infielder, playing all three major league positions: shortstop, second base, and third base. In 2006, Yulieski Gurriel, the son of former Cuban star Lourdes Gurriel, was regarded as Cuba’s best player.
At the 2006 World Baseball Classic, scouts anticipated that if Gurriel entered the draft, he would be a first-round pick. He defected from Cuba in 2016 and made his Major League Baseball debut.
Gurriel became the fifth player in MLB history to win an Olympic gold medal and a World Series victory in his first full season in the league. He was instrumental in the team’s American League (AL) pennants in 2019 and 2021.
In 2021, Gurriel became the second Cuban-born player to win the American League batting title. He was the league’s finest first baseman when he received the Gold Glove Award in 2021, making him the league’s oldest Gold Glove winner at the time.
Is Yuli Gurriel Russian?
He is a professional baseball player from Cuba. He was born in Sancti Spritus, which is the capital of the province of Sancti Spritus in central Cuba and one of the earliest Cuban European towns. As a result, he is a native Cuban.