One of the names well circulated around the Hot Stove is that of Cuban outfielder Yasmany Tomas. Big bats are in high demand with any team, whether interest is expressed or not. Tales of Tomas’ dingers have spread throughout the baseball world faster than wild fire. Everyone is interested in Tomas, and they’re coming from all over to see him play.
According to Jesse Sanchez of MLB.com, the 24-year-old left Cuba earlier this year to train six days a week for four months until the rules allowed him to begin working out on a baseball field in early September. Tomas was featured in a showcase in front of scouts from all 30 Major League teams later in September, and held private workouts for the Diamondbacks, Dodgers, Mariners, Giants, Padres, Phillies, Rangers, Red Sox and Royals in following weeks.
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Playing five season for the Havana Industriales in Cuba subjects Tomas to international signing guidelines. In his breakthrough year of 2011-12, Tomas batted .301/.340/.580 with 16 homers in 240 plate appearances over 69 games. During the 2012-13 Serie Nacional regular season, Tomas hit .289/.364/.538 with 15 home runs and 52 strikeouts in 324 plate appearances over 81 games. This past season with the Industriales, Tomas finished at .290/.346/.450 with six homers and 46 strikeouts in 257 plate appearances, even after suffering an arm injury crashing into an outfield wall in February.
It is expected that some teams will want to lock Tomas up in a six or seven year deal, similar to that of Yoenis Cespedes. At 6-foot-1, 230 pounds, Tomas is labeled as a corner outfielder, which is a preferable position for the San Diego Padres. Sanchez also reported that since the Atlanta Braves and Padres have emerged as front-runners, both clubs are expected to meet with him this weekend in the Dominican Republic. Tomas is currently reviewing offers and is expected to be attending the Winter Meetings in San Diego next month.
Tomas is biding his time and patiently reviewing offers from clubs. Though he is expected to sign long-term, possibility of a shorter contract should not yet be ruled out.