Outfielder Rusney Castillo defected from Cuba earlier this year and has been declared a free agent by major league baseball. Castillo reportedly has already gotten a great headstart on his career in MLB by signing up with Jay Z’s Roc Nation.
The next step for Castillo is to hold a showcase workout for major league clubs. Ben Badler says he expects that workout to happen soon, either in the United States or Dominican Republic.
The right-hand-hitting Castillo played at the highest level in Cuba for several years, his best season coming in 2011-12 when he hit .332/.395/.545 in 420 plate appearances with 16 home runs. He obviously has a little pop despite being only 5-9, but the attribute that has teams really excited is his speed. Castillo was 22-for-29 in steals in 2011-12, and the year before he led his league with 29 steals in 35 attempts.
In 2011 he made the World Cup all-tournament team by hitting .512 in 10 games with two homers, two triples and four doubles.
Scouts don’t expect Castillo to have great immediate impact, but he definitely is a talent to watch. Castillo joins Robinson Cano and CC Sabathia on Roc Nation’s roster of baseball players.