MONDAY: Despaigne’s showcase will now take place on September 23rd, Badler reports.
THURSDAY: Cuban right-hander Jorge Despaigne has been declared a free agent by Major League Baseball, reports Ben Badler of Baseball America. He is yet to be cleared by the U.S. Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) to sign, it appears.
Despaigne, 23, presents a plus fastball that can hit the mid-90s, says Badler, though he can struggle to spot it. As Badler recently explained, Despaigne is said to have difficulty repeating his mechanics. Lacking international exposure, Despaigne is a “relative unknown” with “a higher uncertainty level,” according to Badler.
Importantly, with just three seasons of play in the Cuban league Serie Nacional under his belt, Despaigne will be subject to international bonus limits. With many clubs having already allocated their international spending, he may present an opportunity for a team that has already decided to accept penalties or that has some available space.
Despaigne, residing in Haiti, will put on a showcase in the Dominican Republic on September 25. He will be joined there by countrymen Dian Toscano (a 25-year-old outfielder) and Javier Gonzalez (a 20-year-old righty).