The Red Sox recently showed interest in Cuban pitcher Miguel Alfredo Gonzalez. Now, they’re turning their attention to a Cuban slugger.
According to The Boston Globe’s Peter Abraham, the Red Sox are “certainly interested” in power-hitting first baseman Jose Dariel Abreu. Abreu has defected from Cuba and is currently in the process of becoming a free agent.
Abreu’s defense apparently hasn’t been all that impressive, but the 26-year-old has tremendous power and was considered one of Cuba’s best hitters. He hit .382 with 13 home runs and a 1.270 OPS in 42 games this season after hitting .394 with 35 homers and a 1.379 OPS in 71 games last season. While Abreu will be a wild card upon joining the majors, the Red Sox could have a need at first base, as Mike Napoli is set to become a free agent after this season and the organization doesn’t have any elite prospects at the position.
Red Sox general manager Ben Cherington was asked about Boston’s potential interest in Abreu, but he was unable to offer up much because his overall knowledge of the slugger is still limited.
“I can’t give you much of a scouting report,” Cherington said on WEEI’s Dennis and Callahan. “We just don’t know him well enough yet. And of course until he’s gone through the process of getting cleared and all that, there’s really not much to say. As with any player that comes out of Cuba and has a chance to help us, we’ll certainly do the work that we need to do. In a few months, I may be able to answer that question better. But the numbers in Cuba certainly were impressive.”
If the Red Sox ultimately decide to go after Abreu, they’ll likely have plenty of competition. According to MASNSports.com’s Roch Kubatko, the Orioles have been scouting Abreu for more than a year and are intrigued by his “monster power.”
Photo via Facebook/Jose Dariel Abreu