In case you haven’t heard, the Indians are one of the teams rumored to have interest in Cuban outfielder Yoenis Cespedes. Cespedes defected and is currently in the Dominican Republic; if a player defects from Cuba and comes directly to the United States than he is subject to the amateur player draft. By establishing residency in a third country (like the Dominican Republic or Costa Rica) than Cespedes is considered an international free agent and can sign with the highest bidder.
Which brings me to my next point – so far the Indians, Yankees, Red Sox, Phillies, Blue Jays, Pirates, Rangers, Nationals, Tigers and Athletics all have expressed interest in Cespedes. With all of those teams involved, it’s probably almost a certainty that he will be priced out of the Indians’ meager budget. Some are predicting a contract similar to the one signed by Cuban pitcher Aroldis Chapman in January 2010 for 5 years, $25.25 million. I think that’s a very reasonable deal, but the great amount of interest in Cespedes may drive the price far north of that number.
Cespedes’ management company made a YouTube video about his talents for potential suitors. The video is 20 minutes long, but it’s actually pretty hilarious. At first I told myself that I wasn’t going to sit there through this entire thing, but I just couldn’t help myself. If I were a general manager, how could you *not* sign him after this video? Seriously though, Cespedes is pretty good and teams will do their homework on him; do you really need this cheesy video?
A few observations on the video:
- Is it just me, or is “Sailing” by Christopher Cross just not cutting it as background music for a baseball highlight video? While watching this, I felt like I should be getting a filling in the dentist’s office, rather than watching a talent video. Then you go from that to Chris Brown and an assortment of other rap and R&B artists.
- Around the 8:30 mark, he exhibits his strength by doing a 1,300 pound leg press (two guys are sitting on top of the weights). Does this strike anyone else as a really bad idea? I’m thinking a potential team doesn’t want to see you injure yourself in your promo video.
- Around the 10 minute mark – without the screen graphics, I never would’ve realized he had “explosive abilities.”
- I feel like I should tell you to take children out of the room near the 11 minute mark. I know he’s just trying to exhibit his core strength, but that just looks *bad*.
- At 14 minutes – is he wearing a Cincinnati Reds shirt? Is that supposed to be a clue? I didn’t see the Reds listed as one of the interested teams; of course they surprised everyone with Chapman…
- At 14:20 – has anyone signed that kid that just stole the home run? That was a pretty awesome play!
- Around 16:15 – is this supposed to be another clue? Is he going to the Rangers? Cardinals? Draw some lines on the map!
- At 18:40 they give a shout out to his mom, who also played softball in Cuba. That’s actually really cool they stuck that in there.
- At 19:30, this is what happens when you cross Yoenis Cespedes. Don’t cross Yoenis Cespedes.