In 2010 Brian McKenna posed this question in the comments on a post about Esteban Bellán, the first Cuban major leaguer and a co-founder of the Habana Base Ball Club. Before becoming a professional, Bellán played for Rose Hill, the baseball club associated with St. John’s College, now Fordham University:
Has anyone ever checked on a college teammate of Stephen Bellan’s named Christadoro (perhaps actually Cristadoro or Cristodoro)? He was signed/enlisted at the same time Bellan was by the Unions of Morrisania in June 1868. Don’t know if he played with the club though.
Brian also included a reference to this item from the Brooklyn Daily Eagle (June 29, 1868, p.2), listing recent transfers of players from club to club:
A Joseph Cristadoro (also spelled Christadoro), wigmaker, is listed in the NYC Directory of 1839-40; he advertises a hair dye in farflung papers of the late 1860s, though he is based on Maiden Lane in NYC. A 12-year-old of that name is a student at the “Roman Catholic College” in West Farms (St. John’s, Rose Hill) in 1850. He was born in New York and may be of Italian descent rather than Spanish.
And a bit later, John was able to confirm his hunch about Cristadoro through the passport application of Cristadoro’s father, born in Palermo in 1813:
John also pointed out that another Rose Hill player from 1868, one “Esendoro,” was more likely to be of Latin American origin:
John then steered me to César González Gómez, who figured out several years ago that “Esendero” was really Manuel Escudero, a St. John’s student from Tepic, a city in the state of Nayarit on Mexico’s Pacific coast. He joins a number of other Mexican students in the U.S. who have been documented playing baseball in the 1860s. Although César doesn’t yet know for sure, given that Escudero was a teammate of Esteban Bellán, who played a major role in establishing baseball in Cuba, it seems very possible that Escudero played a similar role in bringing baseball to Mexico.