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Dodgers close to signing slick-fielding Cuban shortstop Erisbel Arruebarruena

Feb 12, 2014, 11:44 AM EDT

Erisbel Arruebarruena Getty Images

Continuing their focus on using their spending advantages to acquire talent internationally the Dodgers are close to signing Cuban shortstop Erisbel Arruebarruena, according to Enrique Rojas of ESPN Deportes.

Arruebarruena defected from Cuba in November and held workouts for MLB teams in December. He’s considered an elite defensive shortstop, but there are lots of questions about how his hitting will translate to the majors.

Because he’s 24 years old the spending won’t count against the international limits, giving the Dodgers a way to spend all that cash they have sitting around. Earlier this offseason the Dodgers signed another Cuban middle infielder, Alexander Guerrero, for $28 million, and in 2012 they dropped $42 million on Cuban outfielder Yasiel Puig.

  1. moogro - Feb 12, 2014 at 11:49 AM

    Baseball is awesome.

  2. yahmule - Feb 12, 2014 at 12:08 PM

    The next Mark Belanger?

  3. louhudson23 - Feb 12, 2014 at 12:19 PM

    It isn’t the juiced game anymore and defense matters again. Bat his ass eighth and watch the ground balls die.

    • yahmule - Feb 12, 2014 at 2:00 PM

      His bat compares unfavorably to that of Jose Iglesias, but I will be more than happy to see him out there behind Kershaw.

    • clemente2 - Feb 12, 2014 at 2:24 PM

      hmmm, Hanley?

      • yahmule - Feb 12, 2014 at 3:58 PM

        Will shove Uribe off third base if Ruerue really is the next Vizquel.

  4. upperdecker19 - Feb 12, 2014 at 2:12 PM

    Learning about Cuba here. Time for a little feast?

    Regards,
    Jeff Spicoli

  5. gibbyfan - Feb 12, 2014 at 4:00 PM

    Cuban version of Brendan Ryan —-if he is that good defensively.

  6. flash8910 - Feb 12, 2014 at 5:14 PM

    Ramirez is a FA after next season. So this will be interesting. Could the Dodgers be all Cuban up the middle in 2015.

  7. @Cereal_22 - Feb 12, 2014 at 5:32 PM

    Thanks for the level playing field Bud Selig

  8. jkaflagg - Feb 12, 2014 at 6:17 PM

    Don’t think he’ll swing a deal anything close to what Puig or Guerrero got, but feels like a good addition for the Dodgers….Seems as though they have waited long enough for Dee Gordon, and when Hanley Ramirez inevitably moves to 3B a plus-fielding SS would be much appreciated by the billion dollar pitching staff. The Dodgers will always be a team built around pitching, and even if he doesn’t hit he’ll still help them win a lot of 2-1 & 3-2 games….and another Cuban can help Guerreo assimilate and maybe even calm the Wild Horse a bit….

  9. alwaysaharley33 - Feb 14, 2014 at 6:36 PM

    I would have to agree with jkaflagg,. also would like to see another SS get into the mix. Hitting could be overcome in the big picture.

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