Cuban slugger Abreu to sign soon, White Sox, Rangers possible

Cuban first baseman Jose Abreu is expected to sign soon, with the White Sox and Rangers showing the most interest.

Some people involved believed Thursday that the White Sox were front-runners, but reported Thursday night that the Rangers have strong interest, and a source confirmed their involvement.

The Astros, Red Sox and Giants are among the other teams believed to have tried for Abreu, but it appeared Thursday that none of those teams were likely to get him.

The price of Cuban players has gone up with the success of Yoenis Cespedes and Yasiel Puig the past two years. The 26-year-old Abreu is seen as a slugger whose skills should translate to the major leagues.

Abreu hit three home runs in six games for Cuba in the World Baseball Classic last spring. He hit .345 with 19 HR and 60 RBI over 264 at-bats in the 2012-13 Cuban season.

Abreu's best season came in 2010-11, when he posted a smoldering .453/.597/.986 with 79 runs, 93 RBI and 33 HR in only 66 games.

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