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Puerto Rico Newsbeat

Sunday, June 07, 2015

Do Puerto Rican ballplayers belong in a stateside or potential international MLB draft?

“The biggest problem in Puerto Rico is lack of dedication,” Posada said. “In Puerto Rico there is less of a need to play baseball. But the draft also makes it tough. You have kids here who are 16 and 17 competing against kids in the states who are already in junior college. So we just try our best to give them a good start, help them develop the tools, bodies, arms and the rest will come.”

But what about the big elephant-in-the-room question? Isn’t asking Caribbean scouts to find Puerto Ricans for the stateside draft a little like asking the goat to guard the lettuce?

As a scout, there is much more incentive to discover (and hone) young talent in neighboring Dominican Republic, Venezuela and now Cuba, and sign them to the club the scout works for. There’s much less impetus to develop or find hidden gems in Puerto Rico and then serve them up to a new player draft for rival clubs.

“The only incentive a scout in Puerto Rico has to find talent is the pride of wanting to pick the best for Puerto Rico,” Big League Team Elite coach Rodríguez said.“I have seen scouts who will say about a kid with good potential: ‘I’m going to hide him.’ But in Puerto Rico that is not possible.”


 

 

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