It's hard not to get carried away with this one. Daniel Carbonell recently defected from Cuba, and he's looking for a place to play. He's a five-tool switch-hitting center fielder, and the Mariners reportedly have a shot at signing him. This comes today from Ken Rosenthal:
If you want to see what he's like, watch the video above of him practicing baseball in his underwear. Here's the description on that video:
The 22 year-old (23 on March 29, 2014), is a legit five tool player: exceptional speed (sub 6.5 - 60), quick hands, and a rifle for an arm. The ability to spray the ball around the field with power, and he's a switch hitter. "Carbo" has been playing professionally in the Cuban Series since he was 17.
Again, hard not to get carried away. Given the recent success of other Cuban position players in Yoenis Cespedes, Yasiel Puig and Jose Abreu—and the Mariners' dearth of above-average outfield talent—it's impossible not to be fired up.
Of course, as mentioned, there are other suitors. The Yankees and Blue Jays were linked to Carbonell way back in February, with another recent report continuing to tie the Yanks to the outfielder.
It's been some time since the Mariners signed a high-profile international free agent. The last time they signed one out of Cuba was back in 2005, with Yuniesky Betancourt. Of course, the Mariners have seen success thus far with Roenis Elias but, as written on here previously, he was a less heralded prospect during his daunting defection from Cuba.
But the outfield is a big-time need for the Mariners, and this could be a big-time player. If the international scouting department thinks Carbonell is something, the organization should go after him hard. We've seen enough to know that Cuban talent can not only translate well, but make an enormous difference, here in the states.