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Houston Reaching Into Latin America A Good Thing

It's been a couple of days and nothing much has come of Houston's interest in Cuban outfielder Jorge Soler. Will they actually be players for the future right fielder or will a team like the Chicago White Sox or Philadelphia Phillies swoop in and spend more than new owner Jim Crane?

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I think the Astros interest isn't really a sign either way. Interest does not imply an ability to sign him. His price tag is likely to be quite substantial, though probably not as high as either Yoenis Cespedes or Aroldis Chapman. No, it's likely he'll fall in the range of Cuban first baseman Kendrys Morales, who signed with the Angels in 2004 for $3 million.

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That's still more than the Astros gave Ariel Ovando in 2010. His $2.6 million was the most the Astros had given to a Latin American prospect in history. Considering Soler will likely command more than that, it'll be interesting to see what Houston can offer him.

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Soler projects in right field, with great power potential and average hit skills. That sounds very much like both Domingo Santana and Ovando, both of whom are likely to play in right field as well. So, the question becomes whether Houston should spend the money on Soler with prospects at the position.

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