Cuban star Moncada clears government hurdle, will play in

Baseball Cuban baseball star Yoan Moncada is closer to becoming a free agent and able to sign with a major league team.According to .com, the agent for Moncada received a notification from the U.S. Treasury Department's Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) on Friday night stating Moncada is an unblocked national under recently amended guidelines for Cuban players and thus is generally licensed to play in the United States. MORE: Baseball's All-Cuban team | The press and Cuban players | White Sox designate Viciedo for assignment "I'm pleased that the Administration has relaxed the process for Cubans leaving their island to pursue a career in baseball in America," the agent, David Hastings, said, according to .com in a statement. The OFAC e-mailed letters Friday to several Cuban players who had requested a “specific license” to play in the United States. According to the letter, the Cuban Assets Control Regulations “unblocks any individual national of Cuba who has taken up permanent residence outside of Cuba, provided certain required documentation is obtained and the individual is not a prohibited Cuban Government official or prohibited member of the Cuban Communist Party.” Moncada established reside

ncy in Guatemala in October, .com reported.The OFAC ruling will likely bring change to the current policy that states a player must obtain a specific license for unblocking from OFAC before it allows a Cuban national to enter into an agreement with a team.Moncada, the current top Cuban prospect, is expected to command a bonus upward of $30 million from whichever team signs him — hence the reports that the deep-pocketed Yankees, Red Sox, Dodgers and Cubs are his primary suitors.The 19-year-old infielder hit .277/.388/.380 with four home runs and 21 stolen bases in two seasons for the Cienfuegos Elephants of the Cuban National Series. He is believed to have superior talent than fellow Cuban Jose Abreu. For comparison, Abreu hit .317/.383/.581 with 36 homers and 107 RBIs last season for the White Sox and was voted AL Rookie of the Year.