Earlier this season the Chicago White Sox made a splash by winning a bidding war to sign Cuban outfielder Luis Robert.
The White Sox beat out teams like the St. Louis Cardinals for the right to sign Robert with an offer that included a 26 million dollar signing bonus. Some scouts have compared Robert to the likes of Bryce Harper and Ken Griffey Jr. and has been called “the best player on the planet” by MLB.com but at only 19 years old what about the young player makes him so appealing to MLB teams?
Luis Robert was actually born Luis Robert Moiran in Cuba on August 3, 1997.
Robert began playing nationally for Cuba as part of their 16-and-under league at the age of 14 batting .325 with 21 steals in his first year.
The next year at age 15 he would be moved up to the 18-and-under league and by 16 years old in that league he sported a batting average of .383 on top of smashing 4 home runs in the COPABE 18U Pan American Championship in 2014.
Later, Robert would be named to the all-tournament team in the 18-and-under World Cup in Japan in 2015. While playing for Ciego de Avila in Cuba’s Serie Nacional, which is the country’s top league, Robert hit .393 with 12 home runs and 11 stolen bases.
Robert was also part of the Cuban team that took part in the Canadian-American League last summer.
Robert was widely believed to be the next face of Cuban baseball much like Yulieski Gurriel was before him. But he defected to the United States in November in order to pursue his dream of playing major league baseball.
Once Robert was declared a free agent he was not allowed to sign with a team until May 20th where upon the deal with the White Sox came to fruition.
Regardless of his previous experience, which he has a lot of, Robert looks to be a vital part of the Chicago White Sox rebuilding efforts and an important part of the team for years to come.