Jim Callis of Baseball America reports that the Cardinals have agreed to terms on a contract with their first round pick from last week’s first-year player draft, Gonzaga left-hander Marco Gonzales.
Gonzales got $1.85 million, which is slightly under the recommended signing bonus for the 19th overall pick (which is where he was selected on Thursday night). Considered by many to be the most polished pitcher in this year’s draft class, Gonzales could move very quickly through the Cardinals’ farm system. He has a low-90s fastball and a well-developed changeup, which is a nice arsenal for a lefty.
The 21-year-old native of Fort Collins, Colorado posted a 2.80 ERA, 1.20 WHIP and 96/25 K/BB ratio in 106 innings this season as a junior. He also hit .311 with a .375 on-base percentage in 167 at-bats.
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.