Sunday, March 7, 2010

International Notes

Guillermo Pimentel was said to turn down an offer from TX. Iglesias turned down 10 million from the Cubs.

The NYY apparently thought the market was inflated for Iglesias.

DePaula threw at the Seattle DR academy on Friday. Signing could come soon. Yankees are said to be "nervous" about the whole situation, the visa situation i presume.

Carlo Matias is getting some buzz as his suspension ended on 3/1 with NYY very interested. Seems to have a plus FB, not sure of his age or if he'll be able to get a VISA. He reportedly has a fastball that flashes upper 90s.

I think the high ceiling Pacific Rim HS seniors (turning 18 -taiwan, Korea) might start signing soon - between now and May - with the Cubs that is. TX never seems to be a player.


Cubans Galore

There are about 30 Cubans out there. Adeiny Hechevarria and Reinier Roibal just cleared the US blocking agency along with 2 others. Hecheverria is said to be comparable if not better than Jose Iglesias. Roibal seems to be highly regarded or at least people like his plus fastball. Ruiz switched agents to reset the market for him; his former agents big mouth and asking price scared many teams off. Ruiz received a 2m dollar offer from Tampa Bay in February but I guess he turned it down. Now he's probably having trouble getting 1m.

Per Terreno de Pelota, Minnesota signed 6.2 28yo Cuban rhp Yoslán Herrera who touched 94 during a private work out with them shortly before his signing. He signed a minor league deal and will begin in AAA. Having defected in 2005, he appeared in the Pirates AAA team in 2009. He pitched this winter for the Navegantes of Magallanes in Venezuela.

Cubs sign 22yo Cuban RH reliever Juan Yasser Serrano for 250k. He defected in April 09 and will begin the year in LowA. According to his agent Jaime Torres, hes' 87-92, with an AA CB, change and slider with AA command and good pitchability.

LH 1b/of Leslie Anderson reportedly dissapointed in his open workout in Mexico along side Ruiz. Ruiz impressed enough to convince some he could sign for 7-figures and help a ball club now.

A little more on the Cubans: Adeiny, Ruiz, Maya and Roibal are the top ranked players right now. The value pick is probably Maya as many teams believe he can be a successful back roto guy right now. He has a slider(ditched CB last year), change, an average FB (88-92) and good pitchability. Adeiny Hechevarria is regarded as a shortstop on par with Jose Iglesias, with a higher ceiling offensively and more physical projection, as well as an excellent defensive profile, though it would be hard to better Iglesias. Roibal pitched as both a starter and reliever and seems to have the body of a late inning bullpen arm (6.1/215) to go along with a 94-96FB (and slider, sinker) and he's still young. 22yo LF Padron (5.11/212) has gotten some buzz lately with some AA power in workouts.

Players worth a look who might need some development time: Adeiny, Roibal, Padron, Ibarra. Longshot: Casanova. Ready now: Ruiz, Maya. Some of the guys in their mid to late twenties (inf/of/bp) might profile as end of utility or platoon guys or may be nothing more than 4A/journeyman types. I wonder if Mujica could make a roster as the utility inf. I wouldn't mind TX taking a shot at Roibal and Ibarra, though Ibarra seems like a project at 22yo; it depends on just how advanced he is as a catcher. Adeiny would be a dream but will likely be out of TX price range (likely between 5-10m) esp. given the new-found system depth at that spot.

Cubanballplayers.com has the remaining Cuban FAs ranked accordingly and I've included some basic profile info culled from there and other sources:

1. Roibal (sp/rp, 20-21yo)
2. Ruiz (1b), 25-26, 6.2/200-230, AA power
3. Maya (SP, 28yo -5th starter), 88-92, slider, change
4. Anderson (1b/lf), 27yo, 6.1/200 (has not impressed)
5. Padron (22yo,lf?)5.11/202, good power?
6. Adeiny (ss), 20-21, plus defense, good bat, 6/160
7. Linares (25-26yo, cf?/lf), 5.9/176
above average power, pull hitter
8. Mujica (24-25yo, ss), 6.1/168
good range, plus arm, contact hitter
9. Marti (rp)(~30) middle reliever
10. Ibarra (C)- 22yo, athletic, projects as catcher, good power;
played C, 1b, 2b, 3b
11. Soto (RP) - throws hard (95-100), slider, poor command,
poor pitchability
12. Gil (rp)- throws hard, fringy command
13. Espinosa (loogy)- high 80s, best pitch BB, ave command
18. Suarez (rp), 26yo, 6.0/225, poor 08-09, ave command
said to have good repertoire, smooth delive, AA FB
21. Gomez (cf/lf)(~30), #2 hitter, good PD, arm
24. Casanova (rp), 21yo, 6/227, poor first three years,
nice 08-09 in 65 innings, fringy command at best, Low strikeout rate
for FB that flashed 94, slurvy slider (79-81), possible changeup



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