The Padres may have missed out on Yasmany Tomas, but they are interested in another Cuban phenom. This time it’s a right-handed pitcher named Yoan Lopez.
According to Jesse Sanchez, there are three other teams that have expressed serious interest (the Yankees, Giants, and Diamondbacks.) This means that the Padres will have stiff competition from teams that have a bigger need for starting pitching.
Only two starters on the current roster made more than 20 starts. They could use a young and talented pitcher.
Lopez features a cutter, a change-up, a curveball, and a slider but is best known for his fastball. According to Sanchez, his fastball sits between 93-95 but has touched 100 MPH three times since he began throwing for teams.
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The Padres could catch a break as one of their competitors, the Yankees, are in the maximum penalty range for exceeding their international spending limit and won’t be able to sign a player after this signing season for more than $300 thousand. This could come into play if Lopez is unblocked by the US Dept. of Treasury’s Office of Foreign Asset Control after June 15th when the 2014-2015 signing period ends.
In his final season in Cuba before defecting, he posted a 3.12 ERA with 28 strikeouts and 11 walks in 49 innings.
Lopez had a showcase for teams earlier this month and will have another one later this month.