Padres host workout for pair of Cuban players
More than dozen scouts watch shortstop Diaz, righty Despaigne
PEORIA, Ariz. -- A little international baseball came to the Padres' Spring Training facility in Arizona on Thursday, as the team held a workout for two Cuban players.
Shortstop Aledmys Diaz and right-hander Odrisamer Despaigne worked out in front of over a dozen scouts on Thursday morning, the same day pitchers and catchers reported to camp.
"It was good to host the workout," said Padres general manager Josh Byrnes. "Obviously, scouts from many teams attended, but it's nice to show the players the high-quality facility we have."
The 27-year-old Despaigne had a 3.27 ERA for the Cuban team Industriales with 98 strikeouts in 143 innings in 2013. The previous season, he had 128 strikeouts in 169 1/3 innings with a 2.60 ERA.
Diaz, 23, last played in Cuba during the 2011-12 season before defecting. Diaz can sign with a Major League team as soon as next week after previously falsifying his age.
Of the two players, Diaz would most certainly command the higher contract given his age and that he plays such a premium position.