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Back in the summer of 2016, trade talks were stalled between the Houston Astros and the Los Angeles Dodgers. That’s when former Astros general manager Jeff Luhnow tossed out the name of a nineteen-year-old slugger who hadn’t even played his first minor league game.“What about Álvarez, the Cuban?” he asked. The GM remembered that one of his scouts had pushed to sign Álvarez two months earlier, during Major League Baseball’s international signing period. Now, as he fielded offers for reliever Josh Fields from multiple suitors, so many names had been discussed that it was difficult to keep them all straight.At first, the Dodgers emphatically refused: no way would they consider trading Yadier Álvarez. They thought Luhnow had inquired about a highly touted Cuban pitcher who had gotten…
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