Panthers Sign Veteran Cuban Pitcher

The Kitchener Panthers are excited to announce the signing of Starting Pitcher, Yamichel Perez (Sancti Spiritus, Cuba), for the 2023 season.

The 33 year old left handed pitcher has been a longtime standout in the Cuban National Series, having pitched in 14 seasons and accumulated 68 wins and a 4.14 ERA. He has spent the majority of these seasons pitching for the Sancti Spiritus Roosters but has transferred over to the Matanzas Crocodiles in the past three seasons. He also has experience representing Cuba on the international stage and has been selected as a Cuban National Series All-Star multiple times.

Yamichel is known to be a crafty lefty with great accuracy that can provide consistent quality starts. His ability to log heavy innings should provide the Panthers with a much needed work horse at the top of the starting rotation.

In 2019, Yamichel was the league leader in wins, recording a 13-3 record, to go along with a 2.74 ERA, 121.1 innings pitched and a 2.52 strikeouts to walks ratio.

He has spent the past 3 Cuban National Series campaigns representing Matanzas and has recorded a 24 and 12 record while suiting up alongside former Panthers Noelvis Entenza, Yoennis Yera and Jonder Martinez who is now serving as the team’s pitching coach after his retirement.

In 2022, Yamichel competed for the “Centrales” in the newly created Cuban Elite League which featured 6 teams comprised of the top players from the 18 existing Cuban National Series teams. In this best on best competition, Yamichel rose to the occasion, recording a 3 and 1 record with a 2.36 ERA across 9 starts. He boasted a sparkling 6 to 1 strikeout to walk ratio, punching out 30 batters and only allowing 5 base on balls across 49.2 innings pitched.

With a reputation as a great teammate and a veteran with plenty of experience pitching in big postseason games, the Panthers are optimistic about the impact the lefty will be able to have on the field and as a leader in the dugout.

Panthers General Manager, Mike Boehmer, who made 2 recent trips to Cuba to scout, negotiate and finalize the Cuban Player Agreements comments; “ I am very pleased that Yamichel Perez will be joining the Kitchener Panthers. We had him signed last year, but visa delays due to the pandemic prevented his coming to Canada. Yamichel is a veteran LHP with 14 years experience in the Cuban National Series. Perez is consistently among the league leaders in innings pitched, and has excellent control. We also like that Matanzas has gone to the Cuban Finals each of the past 3 years; so Perez has pitched in many big games.  We expect Yamichel Perez to be an important part of our 2023 pitching staff.”

Yamichel is part of a talented group of 4 Cuban import players the Panthers have signed which includes a veteran infielder, Cuba’s top defensive catcher and another work horse starting pitcher. Expect to see further announcements on their signings in the coming days.

The 2023 Season is quickly approaching as the Panthers open on the road on May 19th @ Brantford and play their Home Opener on May 21 vs Welland at 2:00 PM. Season Tickets are on sale now with Flex Packs soon to be released, get yours  HERE