Orioles ink Cuban outfielder Henry Urrutia to minor-league contract

July 11, 2012 | Luke Jones

The Orioles have signed Cuban outfielder Henry Urrutia to a minor-league deal, according to a Baseball America report.

The 25-year-old reportedly received a bonus of $778,500 for signing with Baltimore. The 6-foot-3, 180-pound corner outfielder played in Cuba’s top league at least three seasons before defecting to the United States.

Urrutia is a switch hitter with a line-drive stroke that’s more polished from the left side, according to several scouting reports.

In his final season in Cuba, he batted .397 with a .461 on-base percentage and .597 slugging percentage in 305 at-bats with 12 home runs. The outfielder also had more walks (32) than strikeouts (23) and tied for ninth in the league in on-base percentage.

Urrutia lacks the upside of recent Cuban defectors Yoenis Cespedes and Jorge Soler, but he is considered to have reasonable major-league potential. Given his age, he will likely report to one of the Orioles’ higher-level affiliates in the near future.

 

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