Estelar Cuban short-stop Minor League-pact with Cincinnati

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When the doors of the spring camps opened in mid-February, José Iglesias was one of the many unsigned free agents who had no way back to the big divisions.

But his fate went a different direction this Saturday when it was announced that the Cuban shortstop accepted a Minor League contract with the Cincinnati ninth, including an invitation to the training of the big team.

At 29, Iglesias batted .269 with five homers, 48 ​​RBIs and 15 stolen bases in 432 at bats by the Detroit Tigers last year.

Iglesias arrived the same day at the Reds complex in Arizona and completed a physical examination. He will use number 4 on his uniform.

"I prefer not to talk about a free agency," says Iglesias, who joins Cincinnati in the pre-season with compatriots Yasiel Puig, Raisel Iglesias and Odrisamer Despaigne.

"Right now I want to turn the page around and come here to help this team win games, that's the priority."

The Antillian shortstop played for the last five seasons with the Detroit Tigers and was called in 2015 for the All-Star Game.

If he manages to make the team before the opening day, Iglesias would probably serve as a reserve for the Venezuelan short stop Jose Peraza.

The Cuban has played 610 of his 656 Major League-games in the shortstop, but is ready to be useful for the team in whatever role.

"Jose just gives us a lot of depth," said David Bell, manager of Reds.

"He has shortstop, third base and second base He was a versatile and successful Major League player in really good teams, he is a player who brings experience and desire to win."

Iglesias was willing to play where they needed it and that's why he let the Bell know.

"I spoke with David and I said: whatever you need, I'll be there for you." I think that is the mentality I have now, to help the team with everything I can. & # 39; & # 39;