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Tuesday, June 19, 2012

MLB: Cuban outfielder Puig defects

The latest Cuban prospect expected to hit the market just might be the most coveted young outfielder to leave the island in the last 12 months.

Outfielder Yasel Puig, 21, has defected from Cuba and is in the process of establishing residency in Mexico, the first step to becoming eligible for free agency, his agent Jaime Torres said.

A showcase for Major League scouts is tentatively scheduled for later this week in Mexico City.

“As of Monday morning, I submitted information to Major League Baseball and the Players Association that he has taken up residency in Mexico and will shortly establish legal permanent residency in Mexico,” Torres said. “We should have documentation of his legal permanent residency in Mexico soon and as soon as I have that, I will submit it to Major League Baseball and I hope and expect that he will be declared a free agent immediately.”

The 6-foot-3, 210-pound Puig is a known commodity in international circles. He played two seasons for Cienfuegos in the island’s top league, Cuban National Series (Serie Nacional), and was a member of the country’s national team that finished second in the 2011 World Port Tournament in The Nethelands.

“There has not been a player as proven and as young to come to the States from Cuba,” Torres said. “It’s one thing to come to the United States at 19 or 20 years old with a few at-bats or some experience on a national level but this guy has years of national experience under his belt.”

Thanks to Butch.

Repoz Posted: June 19, 2012 at 09:26 AM | 26 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: cuba

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   1. eddieot Posted: June 19, 2012 at 09:36 AM (#4160904)
21? OK.
   2. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: June 19, 2012 at 10:18 AM (#4160932)
When does he become a Cub?
   3. Tricky Dick Posted: June 19, 2012 at 10:42 AM (#4160949)
Assuming he comes to the major leagues, will his contract be subject to the international player bonus pool restrictions?

Edit: I recall reading that playing in the Mexican league (i.e., bonus pool restriction doesn't apply) could be a way to circumvent the international player rules. Perhaps that is why he is establishing residency in Mexico.
   4. A big pile of nonsense (gef the talking mongoose) Posted: June 19, 2012 at 10:45 AM (#4160951)
21? OK.


Probably that's how many grandchildren he has.
   5. Gamingboy Posted: June 19, 2012 at 11:08 AM (#4160970)
Well, he's Cuban. I think Cuba is a bit better at birth certificates than the DR. Although I doubt the Castro brothers would exactly be sending it over.
   6. Joey B. is counting the days to Trea Turner Posted: June 19, 2012 at 11:13 AM (#4160977)
We know he won't be an Oriole!
   7. Dave Spiwak Posted: June 19, 2012 at 11:47 AM (#4161018)
The A's should sign him to fill in for all the times Cespedes is on the DL.
   8. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: June 19, 2012 at 11:53 AM (#4161022)

If Cespedes was "A New Hope", then I expect Puig will be signing with the Empire...
   9. Anonymous Observer Posted: June 19, 2012 at 11:54 AM (#4161025)
The latest Cuban prospect expected to hit the market just might be the most coveted young outfielder to leave the island in the last 12 months.


Exactly how many players, let alone just outfielders, have defected in the last 12 months? Am I just reading this wrong, or does this make it sound like there's a regular supply of outfielders coming in from Cuba?
   10. TerpNats Posted: June 19, 2012 at 12:27 PM (#4161057)
If Cespedes was "A New Hope", then I expect Puig will be signing with the Empire...
Original NY or the New England version?
   11. Kiko Sakata Posted: June 19, 2012 at 12:38 PM (#4161063)
Exactly how many players, let alone just outfielders, have defected in the last 12 months?


Three, I think (Cespedes, Soler, and now Puig). But, I agree, it is a weird sort of hype.
   12. bigglou115 Posted: June 19, 2012 at 01:56 PM (#4161135)
Three, I think (Cespedes, Soler, and now Puig). But, I agree, it is a weird sort of hype.


Yeah, but the hype train was in overdrive for Cespedes. I think the point is that despite the hype of Cespedes and to a lesser extent Soler, Puig may be the one we should have had an eye on all the time. I didn't see it as hype for Puig so much as a knock on the hype given Cespedes.
   13. Gch exhales the vast drunken folly of Epicurus Posted: June 19, 2012 at 02:07 PM (#4161145)
When does he become a Cub?


Not before there's 12 articles written about the Blue Jays interest in making a competitive bid for Puig's services.
   14. Shooty is obsessed with the latest hoodie Posted: June 19, 2012 at 02:28 PM (#4161181)
   15. danup Posted: June 19, 2012 at 02:41 PM (#4161202)
His Cuba numbers are on Clay Davenport's website. .330/.430/.581 last year. Cespedes hit .319/.403/.584 in his career, but slugged .667 in 2011. Also, will someone please smuggle Jose Abreu out of the country?
   16. bigglou115 Posted: June 19, 2012 at 02:44 PM (#4161205)
Not before there's 12 articles written about the Blue Jays interest in making a competitive bid for Puig's services.


Also, MLBtraderumors had the Braves offering $30 Mil to Soler, the next highest offer except the Cubs was around $25 Mil. Has to make the Braves a serious contender for him, no?
   17. MM1f Posted: June 19, 2012 at 04:19 PM (#4161331)
Assuming he comes to the major leagues, will his contract be subject to the international player bonus pool restrictions?


If he signs on or after July 2.
If he signs before then, his bonus (like Soler's) has no restrictions.

Anyone know if it is likely if he paperwork can be rushed enough to make him signable by the end of this month?
   18. Joe Kehoskie Posted: June 19, 2012 at 05:16 PM (#4161387)
Anyone know if it is likely if he paperwork can be rushed enough to make him signable by the end of this month?

I just lived in Mexico for four years. There's basically no chance that Puig can get residency papers between now and late June, in time to sign before July 2, without some type of fraud being involved. Otherwise, guys like Soler and Cespedes (or Gerardo Concepcion, Jaime Torres' last Cuban client) would have sought Mexican papers rather than wait six or eight months in the D.R.

I imagine the people at MLB are observing this effort with bemusement. I'll be very surprised if Puig is cleared before July 2 rather than becoming the first Cuban casualty of the new rules.
   19. Bruce Markusen Posted: June 19, 2012 at 07:04 PM (#4161467)
He would not be the first "Puig" to play in MLB. Rich Puig had no hits in 11 plate appearances for the '74 Mets.

I wonder how that name is pronounced. Is it PWEEG?
   20. Jay Z Posted: June 19, 2012 at 07:18 PM (#4161484)
Go back, you fool! You're in a worker's paradise!
   21. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: June 19, 2012 at 07:27 PM (#4161492)
I'll be very surprised if Puig is cleared before July 2 rather than becoming the first Cuban casualty of the new rules.

It will be an interesting process indeed if he cannot make it before then. If he actually is somewhere in the Soler/Cespedes neighborhood of perceived value, then one team is going to throw virtually all of their international FA fund at him.
   22. McCoy Posted: June 19, 2012 at 07:54 PM (#4161515)
I would think all teams would throw all their international FA money at him.
   23. Joe Kehoskie Posted: June 19, 2012 at 08:27 PM (#4161538)
I wonder how that name is pronounced. Is it PWEEG?

Correct.
   24. It'd be better for 'Spos if you don't understand Posted: June 19, 2012 at 08:52 PM (#4161563)
I thought of this guy:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jack_Joseph_Puig
...he pronounces it "pweeg"
   25. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: June 20, 2012 at 03:52 AM (#4161769)
But who stole his strawberries?
   26. MM1f Posted: June 22, 2012 at 10:47 PM (#4164130)

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