Reporting Tim Kephart
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MIAMI (CBSMiami) – The Miami Marlins have spent the better part of the last two months assembling a team they hope will spark enough fan interest to fill up the seats in the team’s brand new stadium; and they’re not done yet.
According to ESPN’s Jim Bowden, the Marlins have vowed to outspend everyone if Cuban star Yoennis Cespedes ever makes it to free agency this offseason.
Cespedes is likely to play in the outfield if he’s ever cleared to become a free agent by Major League Baseball.
From the Marlins point of view, signing Cespedes would be a coup in a couple of ways. First, he would be a major draw amongst the Cuban population in South Florida after his defection from the communist country.
Second, Cespedes has attained almost cult-like status after several YouTube videos have appeared that have painted him to be the greatest thing since sliced bread in the baseball world.
Its publicity the Marlins can’t buy, and need, heading into the first season at the new ballpark.
Cespedes is trying to establish his residency in the Dominican Republic so he can become a Major League Baseball free agent.
The Chicago Cubs and Detroit Tigers are both expected to be bidders on Cespedes when his free agent status is set.
Rumors have placed the value on a contract to sign Cespedes in the neighborhood of $60 million.