Another touted Cuban in line for Chattanooga Lookouts

Another touted Cuban in line for Chattanooga Lookouts

March 25th, 2014 by David Paschall in Sports - Professional

Puerto Rico's Reymond Fuentes, left, slides as second baseman Erisbel Arruebarruena attempts to tag him during a Pan American Games contest in Lagos de Moreno, Mexico. Arruebarruena is due to play for the Chattanooga Lookouts.

Photo by Associated Press/Times Free Press.

The Los Angeles Dodgers are sending another high-profile Cuban signee to the Chattanooga Lookouts, though the arrival may not be imminent.

Shortstop Erisbel Arruebarruena signed a five-year, $25 million contract with the Dodgers last month and recently was optioned to the Class AA Lookouts. The 23-year-old Arruebarruena defected last fall and has spent recent months in the Dominican Republic.

"He may not be breaking camp with the team," Dodgers player development director DeJon Watson said Monday. "We're trying to get him into baseball shape."

Last spring, the Dodgers optioned $42 million outfielder Yasiel Puig to Chattanooga. In 40 Double-A games, Puig hit .313 with eight home runs and 37 RBIs before being promoted to Los Angeles.

Puig and Arruebarruena have known each other since childhood and were Cuban League teammates in 2010 and 2011.

Arruebarruena was Cuba's shortstop in the 2013 World Baseball Classic, hitting .375 with two RBIs in six games. Los Angeles has Hanley Ramirez and Dee Gordon at shortstop and a touted prospect in Corey Seager, a first-round pick of the Dodgers in 2012 who hit .309 last summer at Single-A Great Lakes and is expected to start this season in high Single-A.

The Lookouts are scheduled to play their annual exhibition game against Chattanooga State next Tuesday night before opening Southern League play next Thursday against the visiting Jackson Generals.

Contact David Paschall at dpaschall@timesfreepress.com or 423-757-6524.