Red Sox Rumored to Scout Exciting Cuban Pitching Prospect in Workouts

Red Sox reportedly work out intriguing Cuban pitching prospect originally appeared on
NBC Sports Boston

One of the more intriguing and mysterious arms in the current free agent class captured the attention of the Red Sox over the weekend.

Yariel Rodriguez, a right-hander from Cuba, has navigated a complex path to the brink of a major league contract, starting from his home country to three seasons in Japan as a reliable reliever for the Chunichi Dragons.

Rodriguez carries an air of mystery due to his limited competitive pitching appearances in the past year, aside from the World Baseball Classic last spring. After sitting out the previous season to pursue a move to the U.S., he finally obtained his release from Chunichi last October and became a free agent prospect for MLB teams. The Red Sox and Padres were among the teams that witnessed him in action at a workout in the Dominican Republic on Saturday, as reported by reporter Francys Romero.

Although Rodriguez excelled as a reliever in Japan, his potential as a starting pitcher has garnered interest. He exhibited his abilities with two starts for Cuba in the WBC, maintaining a 2.45 ERA and impressively striking out 10 batters in 7.1 innings.

With an upper-90s fastball and a complementary slider and curveball, Rodriguez’s pitching arsenal has caught the eye of scouts. Despite his slender physique, standing at 6-foot-1 and 164 pounds, he projects as a young free agent starter at 27 years old, a rarity in the market.

If the Red Sox pursue Rodriguez, they will face competition from 15 other teams that attended his workout last month, including the Yankees, Astros, Rangers, and Dodgers. According to MLB Trade Rumors, he is expected to secure a four-year, $32 million deal in free agency.

Considered as a mid-rotation or depth option, Rodriguez represents a valuable consideration for the Red Sox, especially as they prioritize their hunt for top-of-the-rotation starters.


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