Reds might have Iglesias pitch in winter ball

Reds might have Iglesias pitch in winter ball

ST. LOUIS -- It appears that the Reds' summer signing out of Cuba -- pitcher Raisel Iglesias -- could see his first game action during winter ball in Puerto Rico.

According to Primera Hora in Puerto Rico, the Santurce Cangrejeros announced Thursday that Iglesias would be pitching for the club during the offseason.

Reds vice president of scouting, player development and international scouting Bill Bavasi confirmed that Iglesias is under reserve with Santurce and has a deal that if he pitches winter ball, that it would be with that club. The key word is "if."

Iglesias is currently working out at the club's player development complex in Goodyear, Ariz., and he was expected to be evaluated after participating in instructional league. He recently began long tossing.

Iglesias, who was signed by the Reds to a seven-year Major League contract worth $27 million with a $5 million signing bonus on June 27, arrived in the United States last month from Haiti. He defected from Cuba in November.

"He had so much time off," Reds manager Bryan Price said. "He spent a lot of time physically strengthening his body, his arm and building up his shoulder before they initiated the catch, which they've done."

Iglesias' workouts are being overseen by Minor League pitching coordinator Mark Riggins. According to Bavasi, it will be Riggins, Price, Reds pitching coach Jeff Pico and general manager Walt Jocketty who will determine if pitching winter ball makes sense for Iglesias.

"He was in Haiti for an awful long time not able to do all the baseball-related things -- the throwing, the shoulder programs and the things of that nature," Price said. "At least, that's my understanding."

Mark Sheldon is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Mark My Word, and follow him on Twitter @m_sheldon. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.