Indians close to inking teenage phenom from Cuba
The Indians are close to completing a deal with 19-year-old Leandro Linares Gonzalez, a right-handed pitcher from Cuba, according to sources at MLB.com.
Gonzalez, 19, pitched for the Cuban National Team 16-and-under squad in competitions in Chinese Taipei in 2009 and Lagos de Moreno, Mexico, in 2010. The 6-foot-3, 205-pound pitcher made a name for himself on the island by starring for Villa Clara in the 16-and-under and 18-and-under divisions in the National Championships in Cuba from 2009-2012.
While Gonzales pitched for the Cuban National Team, he has been cleared by the OFAC and is free to sign with a major league team. He falls under the new international signing guidelines because of his age and experience, meaning the estimated $1 million deal would count towards the Indians' international signing pool money.
The Indians have agreed to terms with four players, including shortstop Willy Castro, for $850,000, for a total close to $1.4 million since the international signing period began on July 2. Cleveland entered the period with a bonus pool of $3,636,900.
For the original story, click here.