The Boston Red Sox have agreed to sign Cuban outfielder Rusney Castillo to a seven-year deal worth $72 million. He’ll join the team this season, reports Gordon Edes.
Boston emerged as the favorites to win the Castillo sweepstakes Thursday morning after the Detroit Tigers had been feverishly pursuing the highly-touted 27 year old as well. The Sox will sign Castillo to a record-breaking amateur contract in the coming days, according to MLB.com’s Jesse Sanchez.
Castillo’s deal with the Sox will surpass that of Chicago White Sox first baseman Jose Abreu. Abreu was inked to a six-year, $69 million deal. Boston currently has fellow Cuban Yoenis Cespedes under contract.
Castillo played mainly centerfield in Cuba, but he is familiar with playing second base. He’s mainly known for his blazing speed though, his bat is very active and his arm is strong. With Jacoby Ellsbury now in New York and Jackie Bradley scuffling at the plate, it would appear that Castillo might take over the job. The Sox now have unbelievable outfield depth and what happens of course remains to be seen.
According to Baseball-Reference.com, he hit .324, homered 18 times, drove in 79 RBIs and scored 75 runs in just 88 games playing in the Cuban Serie Nacional in 2011. He also had 29 steals that season. Castillo spent five seasons playing in the league.