You may have heard by now, but the guy in the ridiculous video above is Yoenis Cespedes, a Cuban center fielder who is about to hit free agency by storm. According to several sources, the Washington Nationals are one of the teams rumored to be interested in the power-hitting refugee.
The video above is 20 minutes long and absolutely ridiculous, but seemingly more ridiculous is Cespedes raw power and talent. According to the video he possesses a 45-inch vertical, and can be seen leg pressing well over 1,300 pounds. Despite his size, he can also apparently play a strong defensive center field.
Given all the hype he’s received, many believe he will command an Aroldis Chapman type contract, of $30 million or more. The Nationals are for sure in need of a center fielder, but will they be willing to throw down this kind of cash on an unknown? Clearly his ability is there, as seen in the video and in international competition, but there are often problems with players who come from Cuba.
For starters, his listed age is 26, but there is literally no way of knowing if that is his actual age. Also, I have no idea what the steroid testing rules are in Cuba, but I imagine they aren’t stringent. It’s very possible that this guy is a freak-of-nature athlete, but when you see feats of strength like this you can’t help but be reminded of Mark McGwire and Barry Bonds…
My best guess is the Nats make a strong bid for this guy, but won’t go far past what the Reds paid for Chapman. The team really needs a center fielder and this might be their best option as the market seems pretty thin. If he is the player he seems like in this video, than he probably is worth more than $30 million over the course of three or four years.
The bottom line though is that there will clearly be a strong bidding war for this guy and I think he’ll soon be pushed out of the Nats price range…which is probably for the best.