Red Sox to hold private workout for Cuban prospect

Red Sox to hold private workout for Cuban prospect
November 16, 2011, 8:43 pm
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The Red Sox will hold a private workout for Cuban outfielder Yoenis Cespedes this weekend in the Dominican Republic, a baseball source confirmed Wednesday.

Cespedes, 26, is a righthanded-hitting outfielder with power and speed and is thought by some to major league-ready.

Having defected from his native Cuba, Cespedes must first establish residency in the Dominican, a process which could take anywhere from "five to 15 days,'' according to the source.

Next step after that: applying to Major League Baseball for permission to become a free agent. International players are not subject to baseball's entry draft process.

Cespedes is also considered a strong defender in the outfield and while he has played primarily center field in Cuba, would be open to playing one of the corner spots in the major leagues, the source indicated.

It's unclear whether the Sox consider him ready to play in the big leagues. General manager Ben Cherington said Tuesday that evaluation has yet to be made, but noted that, historically, few Cuban players have immediate success playing in the big leagues.