News and Facts about Cuba

Cuban prospect Vargas, legendary father defect

Cuban prospect Vargas, legendary father defect
By Jesse Sanchez / MLB.com | November 17th, 2015

Legendary Cuban baseball player Lazaro Vargas and his son, top infield
prospect Miguel Vargas, have left the island, according to industry
sources, and are currently in an undisclosed location.

Miguel Vargas, who turned 16 on Tuesday, is seeking a deal with a Major
League team. Lazaro Vargas, 51, who played 22 years for the Havana
Industriales in Cuba’s Serie Nacional and won two Olympic gold medals
while playing for the Cuba’s national team, accompanied his son.
Miguel Vargas was expected to be one of the future stars of Serie
Nacional, a league that has been depleted in recent years with hundreds
of defections. The elder Vargas also managed and served as the director
for Havana’s top team, and he is featured on the 15 centavos stamp.
Prospect Watch: Top 30 international prospects
When the teenager will become eligible to sign is to be determined. The
6-foot-2, 190-pound Vargas is in the early stages of his paperwork, and
he will be subject to the rules of the international signing guidelines
because of his age and experience. He joins a crowded field of young
Cuban talent that includes highly touted 15-and-under Cuban national
squad teammates Lazarito Armenteros, an outfielder, and left-handed
pitcher Adrian Morejon, who are training in the Dominican Republic. The
trio could become eligible when the 2016 international signing period
begins on July 2, if they are not made eligible for the current period
that ends on June 15.
Vargas also joins pitchers Vladimir Gutierrez, Norge Ruiz and Cionel
Perez along with outfielders Yusnel Diaz and Jorge Oña on the long list
of Cuban players to watch who are subject to the international signing
guidelines.
When Vargas becomes eligible to sign will impact his future. The Cubs,
Dodgers, Giants are among the teams that will not be able to sign any
pool-eligible prospects for more than $300,000 for the next two
international signing periods after exceeding their bonus pools this
year. However, they are still in play for players who are eligible to
sign under the international guidelines. The Angels, D-backs, Rays, Red
Sox and Yankees are already in the maximum penalty after blowing past
their bonus pools last year.
Vargas played first and third base in Cuba. He hit .382 with a .444
on-base percentage, 13 doubles, two triples and two home runs and 29
RBIs in 127 games for Havana’s 15-and-under team in 2014. Vargas hit
.297 with eight doubles and two triples for Havana in 2013 at age 13.
Vargas, like Morejon and Armenteros, was named to the all-tournament
team for Cuba’s 15-and-under team at the World Cup 2014. He played for
the country’s 18-and-under national team in Japan in September.
Jesse Sanchez is a national reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter

Source: Miguel Vargas, Lazaro Vargas defect from Cuba | MLB.com –
m.mlb.com/news/article/157498524/miguel-vargas-lazaro-vargas-defect-from-cuba

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