Nothing is official yet, but Jesse Sanchez of MLB.com reports that the Cubs have agreed to a deal with Eloy Jimenez, a 16-year-old outfielder from the Dominican Republic who ranked as the No. 1 international prospect available this year according to both MLB.com and Baseball America.
Chicago made several moves yesterday to add significant international signing bonus money from other teams, although Sanchez says “another team was in the mix and offered more money.”
Jimenez is a 6-foot-4, 200-pound outfielder, but Ben Badler of Baseball America writes that he “has average raw power and a flat swing that results in hard line drives rather than loft power.” Of course, at 16 projecting more power development makes sense and Jimenez would definitely have been a high first-round pick if he were draft eligible.
If you’re interested in reading about the many big-money signings on the international market yesterday, I highly recommend BaseballAmerica.com’s coverage and specifically Badler’s posts on Twitter.
Jon Morosi reports that the Blue Jays and starter Marco Estrada are nearing an agreement on a contract extension. The deal is expected to be for one guaranteed year, Morosi adds.
Estrada, 34, was set to become a free agent after the season. He earned $26 million on a two-year contract signed with the Jays in November 2015. While the right-hander has a subpar 4.84 ERA on the season, he has a solid 170/67 K/BB ratio in 176 2/3 innings and has looked much better since the end of July. Between July 31 and his most recent start on Saturday, Estrada owns a 3.75 ERA.
J.A. Happ is the only other starter technically under contract with the Jays next season. Marcus Stroman will be eligible for his second year of arbitration and the Jays will certainly agree to give him a raise on his $3.4 million salary for the 2017 season. The Jays will likely be active this offseason in adding rotation help and they’re starting early by locking up Estrada.
Red Sox center fielder Jackie Bradley, Jr. robbed Orioles first baseman Chris Davis of his 25th home run on Tuesday evening, leaping at the fence in center field to make the catch and keep the game scoreless in the bottom of the fifth inning.
Davis swung at the first pitch he saw from Drew Pomeranz, a slider that crossed the middle of the plate.
This game has potential playoff implications, as the first-place Red Sox hold a three-game lead over the Yankees in the NL East. Meanwhile, the Orioles are still in the AL Wild Card race, trailing the Twins by 5.5 games for the second Wild Card slot.