The New York Yankees have signed 19-year-old Cuban prospect Omar Luis Rodriguez to a minor league contract estimated to be between $4 and $5 million, reports Jesse Sanchez of MLB.com. Rodriguez is a left-handed starting pitcher that defected from Cuba and was declared a free agent by Major League Baseball earlier this month. Prior to reaching an agreement with the Yankees, Rodriguez was tied to the Los Angeles Dodgers, Philadelphia Phillies and Kansas City Royals.
Left-handed Cuban pitcher Omar Luis Rodriguez has agreed to a minor league deal with Yankees for est. $4-5 M. Check MLB.com— Jesse Sanchez (@JesseSanchezMLB) June 20, 2012
Rodriguez was the latest player to cash in before July 2, making him clear of upcoming spending restrictions.
According to Mike Axisa of River Ave Blues, Rodriguez is a projection guy with an 88-92 mph fastball to go with a developing curveball and changeup.
Scouts have raved about Rodriguez’s poise and the teenager logged a 144-pitch complete game shutout, which included eight strikeouts, versus Team USA in the title game of the 2010 World Junior Championships.