UPDATE 1: In what might be the biggest news of the day, Eloy Jimenez, the top international free agent, has reportedly decided to sign with the Cubs. The signing will be official by the end of the week.
The smallest deal out of the three today was the trade sending Ronald Torreyes to the Astros for their second and third international bonus pool slots.
Torreyes is a 20 year old second basemanwho was putting up decent numbers at the Double A level. He hit .260 with two home runs and 25 RBI. Torreyes was acquired by the Cubs in the 2011 offseason along with Travis Wood and Dave Sappelt in the deal that sent Sean Marshall to the Reds. It is likely that he was dealt because of a log jam in the middle infield. Torreyes was going to have a tough time climbing the system and didn’t excel enough to be kept over someone else.
The Cubs also signed international free agents Gleyber Torres and Jefferson Mejia. Torres,16, is a Venezuelan shortstop who will get $1.7 million. Torres was ranked as the third best international free agent by mlb.com. Their evaluation of him is as follows:
“Gleyber does everything well. He has a smooth compact swing and the ball jumps off his bat. Scouts like that he can spray the ball all over the field with power and believe he has a chance to be a special hitter.
A solid defender, Torres has excellent hands, great feet and he’s known to have an accurate arm with above-average strength. He’s impressed scouts with his ability to make all of the routine plays and an occasional great play. He is particularly adept on his glove-hand side and continues to show improvement on all-around defense.”
Mejia is a Dominican pitcher who was not ranked in mlb.com’s top 30, but figures to make an impact with the team in the future.
The Cubs are also the reported favorites for Dominican outfielder Eloy Jimenez, who is ranked #1 on mlb.com’s list. They would need to make another trade to have enough money to sign him.
More moves were made today, including the callups of outfielder Dave Sappelt and pitcher Chris Rusin. This will be Sappelt’s second stint in the majors after struggling in his first. Rusin pitched in September for the Cubs last season and struggled as well. Rusin will start tonight in Oakland. Ryan Sweeney was moved to the 60 Day DL to clear up space for Matt Guerrier on the 40 man Roster. Him and Pedro Strop figure to be added to the bullpen sometime this week.