The “Big Fish in the Water” has not signed.
— Jesse Sanchez (@JesseSanchezMLB) July 2, 2015
There is still hope the Cubs are in on Martinez as the season for signing international free agents opened this morning. As expected, the Cubs inked several players quickly. The Cubs did sign Yunior Perez, Miguel Amaya, Jonathan Sierra (Estiwal), Christopher Martinez, Aramis Ademan and Yonathan Perlaza, all of whom were profiled on this site in May. At the time of this post, the Cubs are estimated to have spent $7.65 million, almost double their pool. Here is the recap of Jesse Sanchez of MLB.com:
According to industry sources, the Cubs have agreed to terms with shortstop Yonathan Perlaza, ranked No. 13 on MLB.com’s Top 30 International Prospects list, for $1.3 million, outfielder Yonathan Sierra Estiwal, ranked No. 16, for $2.5 million, shortstop Aramis Ademan, ranked No. 19, for $2 million, Panamanian catcher Miguel Amaya, ranked No. 25, for a deal worth $1.25 million and third baseman Christopher Martinez, ranked No. 28, for $1 million.
That’s a pretty good haul for the first part of the first day. More signings will come later.
I like what the Cubs have done in getting (for now) 5 top flight prospects, mostly up the middle type players. Perlaza and Estiwal (Sierra) have been rising on the Top 30 chart all year, while Ademan has been solid in the late teens all year. It will be a couple of years before we know what the Cubs really got today.
These are just 16 year old kids right now. For the next year they will spend time at the Cubs academy in the Dominican before beginning their careers either late this year in the Dominican Summer League or at instructs in Arizona. Fans might be spoiled by the performances of Gleyber Torres and Eloy Jimenez, who both played in Rookie League at 17 years old in 2014. It could happen that one of two of the kids play in that league next year, but most will be in the Dominican League.
It usually takes 2-3 years before some of these kids get stateside.
There are more players out there the Cubs could sign besides the ones on this list, especially in Venezuela, which has been undergoing some political strife.
In addition, several other Cuban players were still unsigned this morning including Andy Ibanez.
Here are some cards of players the Cubs inked this morning.