Sano signs for $3.15 million, then changes name

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Miguel Angel Sano has apparently changed his name, which is certain to raise a few eyebrows after the shortstop from the Dominican Republic signed with the Twins in September amid questions about whether he was really 16 years old.
Kelly Thesier of MLB.com notes that he’d been using his mother’s maiden name as a sign of respect that’s common in the Dominican Republic, but will now go by his father’s last name as Miguel Jean. Adjust your 2017 replica jerseys accordingly.
You’ll see that name pop up plenty on various prospect rankings, because Sano/Jean received a $3.15 million signing bonus that’s the second-largest ever for a Latin American prospect (Cuban defectors excluded) and is considered one of the most advanced hitters to come out of the Dominican Republic in a long time. He’s expected to begin his pro career in the rookie-level Gulf Coast League next spring.

Phillies, Red Sox interested in Carlos Santana

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The Phillies and Red Sox appear intent on pursuing free agent first baseman Carlos Santana, MLB Network’s Jon Morosi reports. Santana rejected a one-year, $17.4 million qualifying offer from the Indians on Thursday and is expected to draw widespread interest on the market this winter. The Mets, Mariners, Angels and Indians could make a play for the infielder, though no serious offers have been made this early in the offseason.

Santana, 31, is coming off of a seven-year track with the Indians. He batted .259/.363/.455 with 23 home runs and 3.0 fWAR last season, making 2017 the fourth-most valuable year of his career to date. Although he was primarily stationed at first base over the last year, he could step back into a hybrid first base/DH role with the Red Sox, who are hurting for infield depth with Hanley Ramirez still working his way back from shoulder surgery.

As for Santana’s other suitors, the Mariners are far less likely to pursue a deal after trading for Ryon Healy last Wednesday. Neither the Mets nor the Phillies have a DH spot to offer the veteran infielder, and the Phillies’ Rhys Hoskins appears to be blocking the way at first base. Then again, Santana may not find a more enticing offer outside of Cleveland, where Edwin Encarnacion might otherwise be the club’s best option at first base. During the GM meetings, Indians’ GM Mike Chernoff said he “love to have both [Santana and Jay Bruce] back” in 2018, but hasn’t backed up that love with any contract talks just yet.