Eighteen year old left-handed starting pitcher Geraldo Concepcion, who defected from Cuba last summer, has been declared a free agent and will soon be negotiating his first contract. Concepcion has flown under the radar this winter, largely due to the press given to higher profile Cuban defectors Yoennes Cespedes and Jorge Soler, but Concepcion should not be over looked. He is a perfectly legitimate prospect in his own right.
The Cubs are not alone in their interest in Concepcion. The Yankees, Phillies, and Rangers are all thought to be involved with the young lefty. I suspect the Pirates, Nationals, and Angels will show some interest as well. It is much to early to project where Concepcion will land, but given the Cubs strong track record in attracting Cuban talent over the past few seasons, there is every reason to be optimistic about the Cubs chances.
Because of his age and limited experience, I would expect Concepcion to spend at least two seasons in the minors. He will need to adjust to the culture as well as to playing in the minor leagues, and any good farm system will give him plenty of time to make that adjustment. If he signs with the Cubs, we could see him playing as high in the system as Daytona before the season is out. His first stop will most likely be the Arizona Rookie League.