Finally putting an end to the uncertainty, Matt Eddy of Baseball America reported this afternoon that the Cubs have officially signed Cuban outfielder Eddy Julio Martinez. According to Jesse Sanchez of MLB.com, the 20-year-old is expected to receive a bonus of $3 million.
Martinez was originally reported to have signed with the Giants for $2.5 million earlier this month. However, the deal was pending a physical and his representatives claim that he never signed a term sheet. Sanchez reports that the deal with the Cubs came together after Martinez’s father sought a bigger bonus.
What caused the confusion with the situation is that Martinez had multiple people negotiating on his behalf. He was represented in the United States by Beverly Hills Sports Council, who agreed to the deal with the Giants. However, he was represented in the Dominican Republic by trainers Aldo Marrero and Amauris Nina, who reached the deal with the Cubs. MLB had been looking into the matter to see if his agreement with the Giants was binding, but they ultimately ruled in favor of the Cubs.
Sanchez writes that Martinez “has a quick and compact power stroke” with base-stealing potential and that he should stick in center field in pro ball. The Cubs already have exceeded their 2015-16 international bonus pool, so they’ll pay a 100-percent overage tax to bring him into the fold.
Mets right-hander Matt Harvey had his triceps “dented” on a comebacker off the bat of Cubs outfielder Dexter Fowler in the sixth inning of Game 1 of the NLCS, but he told Mike Vorkunov of the Newark Star-Ledger this afternoon that it won’t stop him from pitching in a potential Game 5 on Thursday.
Harvey has been dealing with some swelling, but he said today that he’s feeling “good.” He was even able to do some light throwing this afternoon at Wrigley Field. Asked for his opinion on how Harvey looked, Mets pitching coach Dan Warthen said he’s “very handsome.” Of course, discussion over Harvey’s availability for a potential Game 5 could be rendered moot if the Mets win the next two games.
Harvey dominated the Cubs in Game 1, allowing two runs over 7 2/3 innings while striking out nine batters. All signs point to him being ready for Game 5, but Bartolo Colon and Jon Niese are alternatives if the triceps swelling lingers.
After being shut out in Game 1 of the ALCS on Friday, the Blue Jays have grabbed an early lead against the Royals in Game 2 on Saturday.
Chris Colabello led off the top of the second inning with a double against Yordano Ventura before Ryan Goins followed with a double of his own to bring him home. Goins was 1-for-20 in the postseason before his RBI double.
The Blue Jays had a chance to do more damage, but Ben Revere struck out and Josh Donaldson grounded out before Ventura got Jose Bautista to fly out to center field to retire the side and strand Goins at third.
David Price has struck out two batters over his first two innings of work. He’ll bring a 1-0 lead into the bottom of the third at Kauffman Stadium.
While there was some uncertainty on the topic, Marc Carig of Newsday reports that the Mets will start Noah Syndergaard in Game 2 of the NLCS against the Cubs on Sunday. He’ll be opposed by Chicago’s ace Jake Arrieta.
Syndergaard is coming off a scoreless inning of relief in Game 5 of the NLDS against the Dodgers on Thursday. However, he threw over 100 pitches while warming up on multiple occasions, so the Mets wanted to see how he felt before committing to him for Game 2. Per Carig, Syndergaard told Mets manager Terry Collins that he’s fine.
Now that Syndergaard is locked in for Game 2, the Mets figure to use Jacob deGrom in Game 3 on Tuesday in Chicago and Steven Matz in Game 4. Matz could be available out of the bullpen this weekend.
Blue Jays right fielder Jose Bautista tracked down a fly ball off the bat of Royals second baseman Ben Zobrist for the final out of the fifth inning in Game 1 of the ALCS last night. As the Toronto slugger began to run off the field, he motioned as if he was going to flip the ball into the stands until…nope, he decided to hold on to it.
Check out the video below…
Bautista kept a straight face throughout. Cold-blooded. The other day I complimented Astros bullpen catcher Javier Bracamonte for giving baseballs and gear to fans after the team was eliminated from the ALDS, but I can also appreciate the art of the heel.