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July 10, 2009 at 11:26 AM

Report: Sox sign Cuban defector Jose Iglesias for $8.2-million


According to a report in El Nuevo Herald, a Spanish language newspaper based in Miami, the Red Sox have come to terms with Cuban defector Jose Iglesias on a four year deal worth $8.2-million, which figure includes a $6-million signing bonus. The 19-year-old shortstop defected from Cuba during a July 2008 trip during the World Junior Triple A Baseball Championship in Edmonton and thereafter was declared a free agent eligible to be signed at the start of the July 2009 signing period.

Iglesias is said to have a plus plus glove and a plus arm, and has drawn comparisons to Ozzie Smith. He reportedly has average range and excellent instincts. His bat is a question mark at this point, particularly power-wise, and he's not likely to add much more bulk to his 5-10, 180 pound frame. He's a pull hitter with average speed. It has been speculated by some scouts that Iglesias would have been a second round pick if he were eligible for the 2009 draft, but the Sox apparently thought more highly of him. Those same scouts also believe that he will begin his career at High A. It is unclear at this point whether Boston intends for Iglesias to begin his career in 2009 or 2010, or whether he has obtained a visa to play in the United States as of yet.