Yoenis Cespedes is very familiar with next Cuban on Red Sox' wish-list, Rusney Castillo

Rob Bradford
August 02, 2014 - 7:03 am

There is no doubting the Red Sox'€™ interest in Cuban outfielder Rusney Castillo. The Sox were one of the teams to hold a private workout for Castillo '€“ meeting up with the speedster in Fort Myers Friday '€“ while having already witnessed the showcase for all clubs a week ago in Coral Gables, Fla. (Baseball America classified the Red Sox'€™ interest as having the biggest presence at the event, attended by a reported 100 scouts from 28 different teams.) The 27-year-old is an intriguing talent considering his athletic ability. He is 5-foot-9, 205 pounds with the kind of speed built to cover ground in either center or right field at Fenway Park. Offensively, think the high-end potential of 20 home runs, 30 stolen bases. So, do the Red Sox have a chance at reeling in a player considered the next Cuban primed to make an impact on the major leagues? Having one of Castillo'€™s former acquaintances from Cuba '€“ Yoenis Cespedes -- on the team won'€™t seem to hurt the cause. "If he'€™s not a five-tool player, he'€™s a least a four-tool player," Cespedes told WEEI.com. "He'€™s very comparable to [Dodgers outfielder Yasiel] Puig. Obviously a different height and size, but very similar qualities." Cespedes played against Castillo when both were younger, with the new Red Sox outfielder eventually surmising that a major league future might be in the mix for the younger player. "The last year I played with him I saw he was the caliber of player to play on the Cuban National Team, and 90 percent of the players that play on that team has the ability to play in the big leagues," Cespedes explained. The acquisition of Castillo still might considered a long-shot considering the number of teams involved, and the fact that Cespedes wouldn'€™t call his relationship with the outfielder a close one. But the familiarity between the players certainly wouldn'€™t seem to hurt the cause. "I wouldn'€™t go that far," said Cespedes when asked if he would consider each other friends. "We played against each other, I knew he was good and we would talk. But as far as friends go, we didn'€™t know each other that well. I just know he is a very nice, humble kid and a good person."