On the day of the start of the MLB Draft, with baseball teams adding talent in every which way they can, the Dodgers are also looking to add talent in another way as well. The Dodgers are interested in 26-year-old Cuban right-handed pitcher Miguel Alfredo Gonzalez, per Dylan Hernandez of the Los Angeles Times:
Gonzalez could be declared by Major League Baseball as early as this week. Once Gonzalez becomes a free agent and is cleared by the U.S. Treasury Department to sign with American teams, he will hold a showcase for major league scouts. The showcase is expected to take place around June 20, according to a person familiar with Gonzalez’s plans.
Hernandez also spoke with a scout who believes the 26-year-old Gonzalez could pitch in the major leagues this year.
Gonzalez pitched for Cuba in the 2009 and 2011 World Cup, and the 2011 Pan-American Games. He first tried, unsuccessfully, to defect from Cuba in January 2012, per the Havana Times, and was suspended from playing the remainder of the last two seasons. He successfully defected in February.
The Dodgers have been quite active in the international market under the new ownership group, something virtually ignored for most of Frank McCourt's ownership of the franchise. But the best part of potentially signing Gonzalez is that given Gonzalez's age (23 or older, at 26) and experience (at least three years) his signing would not count against the amateur international spending cap of $2.9 million.
Of course it also means that Gonzalez, as a free agent, could get expensive. But if there is one thing the Dodgers have, it's money.