The Dodgers are among the finalists in the hunt for Cuban shortstop Alexander Guerrero, and they may have emerged as the favorite to sign the 26-year-old infielder.
According to several news outlets in the Dominican Republic on Tuesday morning, the Dodgers agreed in principle to a multiyear deal worth $32 million. However, Guerrero's agent, Rudy Santin, shot down the reports and said there are at least three teams, including one American League team, currently pursuing the infielder.
Members of the Dodgers' front office are in the Dominican Republic to announce improvements to the club's academy, Campo Las Palmas, adding fuel to the speculation surrounding an agreement.
"Nothing is finalized," said Santin, who scouted for 28 years. "There is no agreement in hand with anyone. No truth to any of that."
The 5-foot-11, 205-pound Guerrero is a veteran of Serie Nacional, the island's top league, and was an All-Star in 2010 and '11 with Las Tunas. He defected from Cuba earlier this year and has been training in the Dominican Republic ever since. Guerrero was granted free agency by Major League Baseball last week, but he has not secured an unblocking license from the U.S. Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC), which means he is not allowed to sign with a Major League team.
Guerrero is scheduled to hold a showcase at the Dodgers' complex in the Dominican Republic on Wednesday and play in a game on Thursday. Known for his powerful bat and speed on the bases, he is expected to command a five- to seven-year deal.
"We are still exploring our options," Santini said.
On Monday, a source told MLB.com that Dodgers are not pursuing Cuban right-handed pitcher Miguel Alfredo Gonzalez, who is expected to command a multiyear deal that could be worth up to $50 million.
Ken Gurnick is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.Less