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Mets rumors: New York to hold private workout for Yulieski Gurriel

The Cuban free agent appears to already have a suitor

Fukuoka SoftBank Hawks v Cuba - WBC 2013 Friendly Photo by Koji Watanabe/Getty Images

The New York Mets are scheduling a private workout for Cuban infielder Yulieski Gurriel according to a report from Adam Rubin.

According to the report, Mets’ general manager Sandy Alderson says that the team is "going to do [their] due diligence on that player." As Rubin astutely points out, "the Mets have not participated in the market for players directly from Cuba during Alderson's six-year tenure as general manager, but the team is now getting more serious about that route."

It seems as though this is more than just due diligence. Gurriel just became free agent eligible just over a week ago and the Mets are the first team to schedule a private workout with the infielder. According to Jim Bowden, other teams—such as the Angels, Giants, Dodgers, Yankees, and Astros—have been interested, though nothing has come of their interest as of yet.

The 32-year old has spent the majority of his career playing third base, a trait that likely interests the Mets the most. David Wright elected to undergo what could be season-ending surgery for a herniated disc in his neck. In his stead, Wilmer Flores has been covering the hot corner and not doing particularly well on either side of the ball. According to FanGraphs’ measures, Flores has cost his team nearly three runs each with his bat and his glove. The natural shortstop could just be acclimating to a new position though.

While it is far from certain whether or not Gurriel could be in game shape on short notice, the Mets’ need for another infielder seems relatively imminent. While some tandem of Flores, Neil Walker, Asdrubal Cabrera, and Kelly Johnson seems passable, in order to stay in contention, some depth may be a necessity.

In his most recent full season in the Cuban National Series, Gurriel hit a mind-blowing .500/.589/.874 in 224 plate appearances as a 31-year old while spending most of his time at third base.