According to multiple reports, the St. Louis Cardinals are heavily interested in Cuban outfield prospect Luis Robert.
The St. Louis Cardinals are not only interested in Cuban outfielder Luis Robert but have also been scouting him according to Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Goold states the team had a number of scouts and evaluators at Luis Robert’s workouts in the Dominican Republic. Last month it was reported Robert left Cuba in order to become a Major League Baseball player. MLB.com’s Jesse Sanchez reported that he has become a resident of Haiti since leaving.
Robert, 19, has not been declared to be a free agent by the MLB. If the MLB does decide to designate him as a free agent before June 15th, the Cardinals will have a chance at signing him while being limited to the age pool limits. However, if Robert is not a free agent by June 15th, he then becomes a part of the next international signing class that will not open until July 2nd.
If that happens, the St. Louis Cardinals would no longer be able to sign Robert. The team would only be allowed to spend a maximum of $300k due to the fact that they have far exceeded their current international signing limits. With that punishment in mind, Robert will easily earn more than $300k given his age and talent.
MLB.com’s Jesse Sanchez stated that a National League international scouting director believes Robert is the second best international talent in baseball. The reports on Robert state he is already a five-tool player that can crack an MLB roster soon. An American League scouting director told Sanchez that Robert is “the best player on the planet, and that’s no exaggeration.”
The St. Louis Cardinals have exceeded their spending limit for the 2016-17 July 2nd international signing period so they will be limited to only spending $300k in the next period. They’ve also added non-pool players like Jose Adolis Garcia but they continue to explore the international markets heavily.
Luis Robert is considered by many to be one of the best talents in all of baseball and he is only 19-years old. The Cardinals will need a bit of luck to have a chance at him, but if he does become a free agent before June 15th, expect the St. Louis Cardinals to make a huge push for him. However, they surely won’t be the only team in the hunt.