Teenage Cuban baseball prospect defects to the Dominican Republic

14-year-old baseball prospect Johan Rodriguez and his family can no longer take the misery of life in communist Cuba and have fled to the Dominican Republic where the young athlete will pursue an MLB career when he turns 16 and can become a free agent..

Via CubaNet (my translation):

14-year-old Cuban baseball players leaves to the Dominican Republic

Cuban baseball player Johan Rodriguez, who is only 14, just hours ago arrived in the Dominican Republic. Like the majority of prospects that have left the island recently, he intends to sign with a MLB team, but must first wait until he turns 16 to be eligible to become a free agent.

According to sports journalist Francys Romero, Rodriguez was expected to travel to Hermosillo, Mexico to play with the under-15 team at the World Baseball Championship taking place between August 26 and September 4.

The native of Santiago batted third in the lineup for the team that qualified for this tournament with a batting average of .500 (8-16) with two doubles and one triple.

“Nevertheless, neither the young athlete nor his family wanted to wait for the quality of life to improve in Cuba, which sinks deeper into crisis each day,” said Romero.

Johan Rodriguez was part of the team that won the bronze medal in the under-12 category of the 2019 World Baseball Championship. Romero added that from that team, Yeison Rodriguez, Boris Sarduy, Luis Valdes, Yeison Acosta, Christian Saez, and Alex Rodriguez have already defected from Cuba.

Continue reading (in Spanish) HERE.