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Yulieski Gurriel | Third Baseman

Team: International Player
Age / DOB:  (32) / 6/9/1984
Ht / Wt:  6'0 / 175
Bats / Throws: Right / Right

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The Astros have done their "homework" on Cuban infielder Yulieski Gourriel, according to Jake Kaplan of the Houston Chronicle.
GM Jeff Luhnow has been vague about the team's level of interest so it's possible the Astros were just doing their due diligence. Gourriel worked out for the Dodgers on Tuesday and has another workout on the books with the Mets next week. It's likely he ends up with one of those two teams. The 32-year-old was declared an international free agent last week. Jun 23 - 7:38 PM

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Mets assistant GM John Ricco said the team will work out Cuban infielder Yulieski Gourriel next week.

Gourriel had a private workout with the Dodgers on Tuesday. The 32-year-old could help the Mets at third base with David Wright (neck) sidelined though at least August. He hit .335 across 15 professional seasons in Cuba and Japan. Gourriel's primary position is third but he does have some experience at second base.
Jun 23 - 4:16 PM

According to J.P. Hoornstra of the Los Angeles Daily News, the Dodgers held a private workout Tuesday with Cuban infielder Yulieski Gourriel.

Is it any surprise the Dodgers are chasing one of the biggest fishes on this year's international market? Gourriel also has a private workout lined up with the Mets and at least one other team. The 32-year-old played mostly third base (and some second base) during his time in Cuba and Japan while slashing .335/.417/.580 across 15 pro seasons. He was declared a free agent by Major League Baseball last week.
Jun 22 - 8:58 AM

Mets general manager Sandy Alderson confirmed Tuesday that the club will hold a private workout for Cuban infielder Yulieski Gourriel.

"We're going to do our due diligence on that player," Alderson said. "We've made arrangements to do that." Alderson cautioned that Gourriel hasn't seen live pitching in months and probably wouldn't be an immediate answer at third base, but it's clear there is significant interest. Gourriel, 32, is a .335/.417/.580 hitter in 15 professional seasons between Cuba and Japan. He was officially declared an MLB free agent last week.
Jun 21 - 5:50 PM

According to Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports, the Mets are "weighing" whether to make a run at Cuban infielder Yulieski Gourriel to play third base.

The Mets are struggling offensively and will be without David Wright (neck) for the foreseeable future, so it makes sense that they are at least considering the possibility. It's worth noting that Yoenis Cespedes has also given his endorsement. Gourriel, 32, was just declared a free agent by MLB last week. He's a .335/.417/.580 hitter in parts of 15 professional seasons between Cuba and Japan. Because of his age and experience level, Gourriel will not be subject to MLB's international spending limit. He will likely need some time in the minors to shake the rust before joining a major league club.
Jun 20 - 8:32 PM

According to Jesse Sanchez of, Cuban infielder Yulieski Gourriel has been declared a free agent.

Andy McCullough of the Los Angeles Times notes in a followup report that the Dodgers have expressed interest, which comes as no surprise. Gourriel, a 31-year-old third baseman, batted .535 with a 1.615 OPS and 10 home runs over 23 games last season in Cuba's Serie Nacional and he registered a 1.009 OPS in 49 games the season before. He has a younger brother, Lourdes Gourriel, who is also trying to become eligible for MLB free agency.
Jun 13 - 11:46 AM

According to Paul Hoynes of the Cleveland Plain Dealer, while the Indians have scouted Yuleski and Lourdes Gourriel, they are unlikely to pursue either.

It's not due to a lack of need, or the talent of the Gourriel brothers, Hoynes simply notes that the Tribe doesn't have the requisite money that they'll command. It's still unclear when the Cuban duo will be cleared to sign, but when they are cleared they are likely to attract a massive amount of interest.
Feb 14 - 10:54 PM's Jesse Sanchez reports that Cuban infielder Yulieski Gourriel has defected from his native country.

His younger brother Lourdes Gourriel, 22, has also reportedly defected. Yulieski, a 31-year-old third baseman and sometimes second baseman, batted .535 with a 1.615 OPS and 10 home runs over 23 games last season in Cuba's Serie Nacional. He had a 1.009 OPS in 49 games the season before. The well-built native of Sancti Spiritus is an established international slugger who has represented Cuba in all three World Baseball Classics and spent part of the 2014 campaign in Japan. He should do very well for himself once he is granted MLB free agency. Lourdes, the younger Gourriel brother, has been called Cuba's best young prospect.
Feb 8 - 11:01 AM

Cuban third baseman Yulieski Gourriel has signed with the Yokohama DeNA Bay Stars, according to a report from Nikkan Sports.

Patrick Newman of NPB Tracker passed along the news. Gourriel, now 29, has long been one of Cuba's best players and has been rumored as a possibility to defect in the past. However, he'll now utilize a new loophole to show off his talents in Japan and make a little money in the process.
Tue, May 13, 2014 12:29:00 PM

Cuban third baseman Yuliesky Gourriel said Tuesday that he'd love to play in the majors someday.

The 29-year-old Gourriel, a top pro in Cuba for a decade now, has never attempted to defect and isn't doing so now. His hope is that another path to MLB is opened for Cuban players someday. In the meantime, he's seeking permission to play in Mexico, much like fellow Cuban star Alfredo Despaigne did last year. "I'm happy for all the Cubans in the Major Leagues and we follow them even though we don't have direct contact with them," Gourriel said. "In Cuba, we play a good level of baseball, but when they leave the country, they seem to elevate their game. Maybe we don't have best training conditions or equipment, but once they leave Cuba, they explode. Me, I'm just waiting on permission."
Tue, Feb 4, 2014 04:26:00 PM

Cuba defeated Mexico 7-4 on Monday night to stay alive in the World Baseball Classic.

Mexico was eliminated, as Cuba's Norge Vera, who left with a leg problem, and Pedro Luis Laza combined for 11 strikeouts over nine innings. Frederich Cepeda went 3-for-4 with four RBI in the game, and Yuliesky Gourriel went 2-for-4 with an RBI.
Tue, Mar 17, 2009 02:37:00 AM

Yuliesky Gourriel homered and drove in four runs as Cuba beat Mexico 16-4 in seven innings to end round one play in the WBC.

Frederich Cepeda hit his third homer for Cuba. This sets up a Japan-Cuba game to start Pool 1 play. Mexico will face Korea in Game 2.
Fri, Mar 13, 2009 12:57:00 AM

Yuliesky Gourriel, who was rumored to have defected, said he returned with the Cuban national team from a tournament in Colombia.

A report last week said Gourriel and shortstop Eduardo Paret had asked for asylum in Colombia. "I laughed when I saw those reports, because I was home as soon as we finished playing," Gourriel told If the 22-year-old Gourriel were to defeat, he'd immediately become one of the game's most sought-after free agents. Gourriel, though, says he doesn't want to leave Cuba. "My commitment is to my family, which has guided me since I was little, and the revolution, which has guaranteed me everything I've needed to become a ballplayer," he said. "That's all I need as a person. ... I have definite convictions."
Wed, Aug 2, 2006 02:23:00 PM

According to Dominican newspaper El Nacional, Cuban players Yuliesky Gourriel and Eduardo Paret may have defected and asked for asylum in Columbia.

If Gourriel and Japanese right-hander Daisuke Matsuzaka become available, it's going to be a very interesting offseason. Gourriel, who turned 22 in June, looked like Cuba's most talented player while hitting .273/.342/.515 in 33 at-bats in the WBC. Should he become a free agent, he'd likely be a regular at third or second for some team next year. The Yankees would surely be interested even though they're pretty well set at both positions. Paret, who was Cuba's shortstop in the tournament, would be less attractive to teams since he turns 34 in October.
Source: El Nacional
Fri, Jul 28, 2006 06:14:00 PM

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