24-year-old Cuban lefty Misael Siverio, who has officially been declared a free agent, is expected to put on a showcase for MLB scouts on June 10 in Tijuana, reports Ben Nicholson-Smith of Sportsnet.ca. Siverio defected last summer with hopes of reaching the big leagues.
As Nicholson-Smith writes, the 5’9 Siverio does not have a big fastball, but had a successful run through the Mexican Winter League last year. Through 29 1/3 innings, he posted a 2.45 ERA with 36 strikeouts against ten walks. Previous reports have indicated that, despite a relatively low profile, Siverio has drawn interest from about ten MLB clubs.
Several other recent Cuban defectors have inked minor league deals in recent months, including catcher Yenier Bello of the Braves ($400K bonus), righty Odrisamer Despaigne of the Padres ($1MM), and righty Dalier Hinojosa of the Red Sox ($4.25MM). Another player hoping to move from his home island to the North American professional ranks is first baseman Jozzen Cuesta, says Nicholson-Smith. However, Cuesta is still awaiting clearance from MLB and the U.S. Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC).