The Dominican Baseball Guy has been following Alexi Casilla since he first cracked the big leagues. Casilla was playing for the Gigantes del Cibao on the Dominican Baseball Guy's first trip to the Dominican Republic to see the Dominican Winter League (LIDOM) in 2009. The Dominican Baseball Guy got some video of him during a delay at one of the Gigantes home games in San Francisco de Macoris:
He has played with the Gigantes in the LIDOM every year since. This year he hit .336 for the Gigantes in 31 games, and .396 in 17 playoff games.
Casilla has been a solid contributor for the Twins, since breaking into the big league club in 2006. He has averaged around .250 and 90 games over the last five years, filling in at short stop or second based, or DHing some.
His value is as a fielder. One of the best the Dominican Baseball Guy has ever seen live. Super soft hands, decent arm, fast. It really shows how good a player is when you see him playing with or against guys that are not as talented, which sometimes happens in the LIDOM.
The Twins avoided arbitration and signed Alexi Casilla to a one year deal. Alexi Casilla is from San Cristobal, Dominican Republic.