Major League Baseball, and not the U.S. government, is holding Cuban players back from signing with a MLB ball club.
Yoan Moncada and other Cuban players like Hector Olivera are not yet free and clear to sign with the Major League Baseball team of their choice, but they have gotten one significant step closer to being able to do so.
Four days ago, Baseball America wrote that it was Major League Baseball, not the United States that was holding these players back from signing.
According to the U.S. Treasury Department’s Office of Forgien Assets Conrtol, in order for a Cuban player to be able to sign with a team, that player must be considered “unblocked.” By OFAC’s guidelines, the player must prove that they are have established residency in another country in order to be able to work in the U.S. This isn’t a written license.
MLB, however, requires a specific written license from the OFAC which can often take up to six months to recieve from the OFAC, significantly hindering players from signing. Back in 2012, Yasiel Puig signed with the Los Angeles Dodgers with this kind of unwritten license. When this change was made is at this point still unclear.
What is also still unclear is if Moncada is or is not actually able to sign. To learn more use the link below to head over to Baseball Hot Corner: