For the First Time: Bulgarian Baseball Player with a Professional Contract in the USA
Ioannis Alexandrov is officially the first Bulgarian baseball player to sign with a club from the US and Canadian Premier League (MLB), informs BTA.
The 17-year-old catcher and outfielder of the champion “Sofia Blues” signed a 6-year contract with the Chicago Cubs, after a number of top leagues in the Major League, including the Chicago White Sox, Boston Red Sox and Washington Nationals, joined the bidding for his rights in recent month, announced the Bulgarian Federation of Baseball and Softball.
Ioannis caught the attention of scouts from all over America during a two-day training camp in Miami in early November. For four months now, he has been living and training in Florida at the academy of Carlos Castillo, a former MLB pitcher who played for the White Sox and Red Sox teams in the late 1990s and early 2000s.
With the help of the promotional company Perfect Game, which organized the rehearsals last fall, Ioannis also has a personal manager from the sports agency Wasserman Sports: Michael Maulini - one of the most renowned baseball agents in North America.
The teenager from Sofia left Miami for Mesa, Arizona yesterday, where he will undergo the latest functional tests and finalize the deal with the Cubs. After that, the Bulgarian will join the spring training of the “bears”, which are preparing for the opening of the new season at the MLB on April 7.
At the end of the pre-season training, the coaching staff will decide in which division of the club in the lower divisions to send the Bulgarian to start gaining experience.
The Chicago Cubs are one of the oldest baseball teams in the United States. Founded in 1876, the legendary club is a three-time MLB champion (1907, 1908, 2016) and eight more finalists in the World Series (1906, 1910, 1918, 1929, 1932, 1935, 1938, 1945). The system of the “bears” in the Youth League includes a total of seven branches.
Ioannis Alexandrov is expected to start in the Arizona-based rookie team in Mesa.
Ioannis Alexandrov was born on July 29, 2004 in Sofia, he is 193 cm tall and weighs 104 kg. He comes from a sports family with parents, athletes, former Balkan champions - his father Assen is a decathlon fighter and his mother Svetlana is a hurdle player. Thanks to the work of his parents after the end of their careers, Ioannis and his older sister Eleni grew up in Italy, where they lived between 2005 and 2019.
In the Roman suburb of Nettuno - the mecca of baseball in Europe, he became passionate about the American game and began to train, and after returning to Bulgaria he continued to hone his talent.
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