Originally written on Reds Minor Leagues  |  Last updated 3/22/13
The Reds signed Johnny Cueto out of the Dominican Republic in March of 2004. The Reds paid a small sum for Cueto to sign, a mere $35,000. He was relatively unknown as a short right hander, but history would go to show that it isn’t always the big name and big dollar signings that make the biggest splash. At the time, the Reds were not players in the international market. After signing in March, the Reds sent the 18-year-old right hander to the Dominican Summer League. Cueto performed quite well as he posted a 2.58 ERA in 76.2 innings with 26 walks and 69 strikeouts. The Dominican Summer League is notorious for pitchers walking a lot of guys, so Cueto’s low walk total was pretty strong for the league, though he was probably average-aged for the level of competition. With a strong season behind him, the Reds were impressed enough to bring him stateside in 2005 where they sent him to the Gulf Coast League, the lowest rung in the US for minor leaguers. Cueto split his time between the b...
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