Despite earlier rumors to the contrary, the Los Angeles Dodgers have no interest in right-hander Miguel Alfredo Gonzalez, the top Cuban pitcher on the free agent market, reports Ken Gurnick of MLB.com.
The Dodgers were thought to be a prime landing spot for the 26-year-old Gonzalez because of their deep pockets and their recent proclivity for spending gobs of money on largely unseen Cuban prospects. But with $200 million already on the books for their starting rotation -- that's before considering Clayton Kershaw's likely record extension -- the Dodgers have opted to pass on Gonzalez.
Their decision to let Gonzalez go elsewhere may also have a lot to do with their wanting to invest money in another Cuban defector. The Dodgers reportedly signed infielder Alexander Guerrero to a seven-year, $32 million contract Tuesday morning in the hopes that he'll be able to take over at second base before the year is out. Given that Gonzalez's price tag is believed to be around $50 million, even free-spending Ned Colletti is probably hesitant to drop $80 million on two largely unseen prospects.
It was rumored last week that the 6'2, 185-pound right-hander could sign by the end of this week, and that may still happen even with the Dodgers out of the picture. The Red Sox, Rangers, Cubs, Phillies, Blue Jays and Braves have all been tied to Gonzalez, so he certainly has options.
Gonzalez defected from Cuba earlier in the year, and eventually set up shop in Tijuana, Mexico, where he has been throwing for scouts regularly. The righty owns a four-pitch arsenal that includes a solid fastball, a fringy curve, splitter and a change-up. His fastball sits between 89-93 miles per hour, but he's hit as high as 96 on the gun recently.
The projections on Gonzalez's MLB future vary wildly, but most see his upside as a No. 3 starter, per Baseball America.