"It was an honor just to be nominated," Cardenas says of his consideration for a place in baseball's shrine. "There are a lot of people who would like to be in. It's a very exclusive club.
"[But] I'd love to be elected while I'm alive, not after I'm dead. That's no fun."
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Rene Cardenas Age: 65.
Native?: No. Born in Managua, Nicaragua; now lives in Glendale.
Family: Cardenas' grandfather, Dr. Adan Cardenas, was president of Nicaragua from 1883-1887. Rene and his wife of 38 years, Jilma, have one child, Rene Jr., 37, a restaurant manager in Florida. Cardenas also has a daughter, Diana, 42, from a previous marriage.
Passions: Reading poetry, philosophy and a collection of computer magazines. He also enjoys working with personal computers and is an avid--if inactive--ham radio buff.
On his reluctance to translate English baseball terms into Spanish: "I hate to take away some of the English sounds which have already been accepted into Spanish. \o7 Strike \f7 is the flavor of the game. . . . If you try to translate all those things, it will not sound like baseball."
On the recent players' strike: "I feel that baseball has been hurt. . . . Since I consider baseball a sacred thing to me, I think we all should work to help baseball, not destroy it."
On the 1979 revolution in Nicaragua: "I thought that this would pass. But when the United States retired, when it stopped helping the [Somoza] government, I knew the Communists were going to take over. And when I said \o7 Communists \f7 in 1979, they thought I was crazy. At the end, I wasn't."