Cuban defector Jose Abreu signed by White Sox

ESPN just reported that Jose Abreu, who recently defected from Cuban, has signed to the Chicago White Sox for six years, $68 million.

Everyone knew he would sign, and ultimately, where he signed matters only minimally in the context of fantasy baseball — playing for the Sox will hurt his value, but not a whole lot. What’s most important is the salary.

Let’s compare him to other Cuban players who have already made big splashes or recently defected:

Yoenis Cespedes – 4 years, $36 million ($9 mil/yr)
Yasiel Puig – 7 years, $42 million ($6 mil/yr)
Miguel Alfredo Gonzalez – 3 years, $12 million ($4 mil/yr) **almost signed for 6 years, $60 million
Abreu – 6 years, $68 million ($11.33 mil/yr)

With Cespedes making headlines in 2012 and Puig in 2013, teams are turning their attention to Cuba and elsewhere. Abreu’s price tag may be a bit inflated because of demand (and, perhaps, White Sox desperation in part), but his salary ought to reflect his ability.

And it will if the legends of his prowess with the bat are even remotely true. His relative obscurity could make him a fantasy steal, no matter which round you take him, considering he probably won’t go before the top 10, but could very well end the season there.

Remember the name.


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