Rusney Castillo’s stock appears to be soaring.
Castillo, a highly sought-after Cuban defector, is expected to sign with a Major League Baseball team within the next week, according to multiple reports Wednesday. Clubs involved in the bidding believe Castillo could sign a five-year contract worth between $50 million and $60 million, according to ESPN’s Jayson Stark.
Such a contract would be the second-largest ever signed by an amateur player from Cuba or any other country. Only Jose Abreu’s six-year, $68 million contract with the Chicago White Sox would be larger.
Several teams, including the Boston Red Sox, reportedly are interested in Castillo. Red Sox general manager Ben Cherington said Tuesday the team has had discussions with Castillo, but he wouldn’t go into specifics regarding the nature of their conversations or the organization’s assessment of the 27-year-old outfielder.
“There’s obviously been attention on this,” Cherington said Tuesday. “He’s a player that we’ve seen and have talked to, but we’re just one of several teams that have done that, so there’s nothing more I can say about that.”
WEEI.com’s Rob Bradford reported Wednesday, via major league sources, that the Red Sox are one of the teams to have made strong bids for Castillo, whom they held a private workout for Aug. 1. Several teams told ESPN.com that they believe the Red Sox, Detroit Tigers, Philadelphia Phillies, New York Yankees and San Francisco Giants have emerged as the likely finalists for Castillo’s services.
Castillo, who is represented by Jay Z’s Roc Nation Sports, is 5-foot-9 and 205 pounds. He’s said to have great speed, solid line drive ability and occasional power. He projects as a major league center fielder.
It’s possible Castillo could join the majors almost immediately after signing with a team.
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