By now that’s the name buzzing among the Los Angeles Dodgers and their fans. The 19-year-old switch-hitting infielder seems to the the prize of a handful of Cuban players currently hitting the market. Moncada has been working out in hopes to land a deal with a team before Spring Training. The Dodgers have been of the teams with heavy interest in his services.
According to Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports, Moncada drew a crowd in his private workout for the defending NL West champions:
Source: Moncada worked out today for #Dodgers in Clearwater, FL. A number of the team’s top executives were in attendance.
— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) February 12, 2015
While there’s been reports that the Dodgers have “reservations” about signing Moncada, they also want to get a closer look to make sure they make the correct decision. Those doubts about inking the teenage prospect come from the fact that he would cost the team a dollar-for-dollar tax and a two-year probationary period in the international signing game. It’s a battle of risk and reward with Moncada, who can play shortstop, second base or third base, and has shown a strong bat from both sides of the plate.
The private workout comes about 11 days before the unofficial signing date placed by Moncada and his camp. If the Dodgers do break the bank for the infielder, he likely will spend at least the beginning of the year in the minors getting accustomed to professional baseball in a new country.
Not only are the Dodgers looking at Moncada, but they have also been linked to fellow Cubans Hector Olivera, Jorge Hernandez and Yadier Alvarez. The Dodgers hit it big with Yasiel Puig, but have been underwhelmed thus far by Alex Guerrero and Erisbel Arruebarrena, although they have not had the proper amount of time to be completely judged.
It will be a matter of days before we find out if the Dodgers think that Moncada is worth the investment.