The New Market For Cuban Players

When you think about Cuban players that signed with a Major League team this past offseason, the first name that will come to mind is Aroldis Chapman and his six-year, $30.25MM contract. However, as ESPN's Jorge Arangure writes, the contracts signed by Jose Iglesias, Adeiny Hechevarria, and Noel Arguelles may dictate the future of the Cuban market.

Arangure notes that at this time last year, Iglesias and Arguelles were expected to command only $1-2MM on the open market. They, of course, signed for $8.25MM and $6.9MM, respectively. If those players meet expectations, not only will teams start to specifically target Cuban prospects, but players in Cuba will surely take notice and attempt to defect at a younger age.

Even though players like Hechevarria and Iglesias are college-aged, they're perceived to be more advanced than their American counterparts because they've faced tougher competition growing up. However, for every Kendry Morales making an impact in the big leagues, there's a Juan Miranda stuck in Triple-A. The risk associated with young players is the same no matter where they come from, but the Cuban market is getting more and more expensive. 

13 Responses to The New Market For Cuban Players Leave a Reply

  1. Dexter_Morgan 5 years ago

    Well to be fair., Miranda is in AAA because the Yankees signed some guy named Mark Teixeira.

  2. mw3 5 years ago

    Bring on Yulieski Gourriel. I have to imagine he would command huge numbers.

    • Guest 5 years ago

      Speaking of commanding huge numbers,

      I have to think that Arguelles, Chapman, Hechevarria, and Iglesias would all be top 5 picks if they were in the June Amateur Draft.

      I think aside from Aroldis, Arguelles will be incredible.

      Also, no one mentioned Leslie Anderson, he could get a handful of at bats this season.

  3. EvilEmpireMember 5 years ago

    Psssss………….Over here…………A player named Mark Teixeira is keeping Miranda in AAA.

    • Oh I’m well aware, but they didn’t exactly consider him a solution to fill the DH spot this offseason.

      • Guest 5 years ago

        Yeah, and honestly, if Miranda were the DH, then Damon would still be on the Yankees.

  4. Trious 5 years ago

    This will continue as well ESPECIALLY if a Cuban breaks out in another year or so

    More and more people will do ANYTHING to make it here from CUBA

    I expect higher and higher deals to be made the next 5 years

  5. lefty58 5 years ago

    Two of them in Chicago look like busts, Alexie Ramirez defensively is a lot like watching Alfonso Soriano in his second base days, he’ll make some flashy plays that turn your head and be absolutely horrible on the routine ones with a terrible eye for the strike zone and a very long swing, the other is a lazy, out of shape, overweight Dayan Viciedo, no glove, no arm, no work ethic, but can hit a fast ball for power.

    Caveat emptor in Cuba.

    • start_wearing_purple
      start_wearing_purple 5 years ago

      I wouldn’t call Ramirez a bust, he’s just not a superstar. And his UZR rating last year was positive at shortstop. Viciedo suffered from over exposure. He was overhyped and sold as the Cuban Babe Ruth before anyone was even certain he could handle the majors. It shouldn’t be that much of surprise that he’s bombing in the wrong sense.

      • lefty58 5 years ago

        That’s fair enough, maybe I went a bit too far with the negativity on Ramirez. But I can’t stand watching lazy players on defense and I have never seen a lazier infielder than him.
        The guy is constantly daydreaming out there, and if it doesn’t stop, he and Beckham could be one of the worst middle infield combo’s in baseball. And no team makes the playoffs with a bad middle infield.

    • mcqub 5 years ago

      I agree with you about Viciedo, but not about Ramirez, he was second on the rookie of the year voting on 2008, and last year changed to SS adapted very well.

      • disgustedcubfan 5 years ago

        He made some flashy plays at short, but what about the 22 errors which could have been closer to 35, had Konerko not spent the summer digging his throws out of the dirt.

    • bigboreenginerd 5 years ago

      Viciedo’s 19 or 20 right now. Like high school draft picks, it’s WAY too early to make an assessment on him. This wasn’t a 26 year old player brought in to make an immediate impact, and isn’t doing so.

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