Jorge Soler officially a free agent

Jorge Soler officially a free agent

We first told you about Jorge Soler back in November, so it's been a long wait.  Now, just before the draft and weeks before he would have fallen under the new CBA rules, Soler was officially declared a free agent according Ken Rosenthal,

Source: Cuban outfielder Jorge Soler, 20, is now a free agent, eligible to sign with any club...He had been waiting to be cleared by the U.S. Treasury Department's Office of Foreign Assets Control.

The Cubs are known to be heavily interested in signing Soler and many in the industry view them as the favorites.  The Cubs had earmarked a lot of money on the draft and free agency, some say 3x the amount or more that they will be allowed to spend now under the new CBA.  That means they probably won't be shy about bidding for Soler, perhaps even overbidding to make sure they add a potential impact talent.  This is their last chance to bid freely.

Soler is a potential power hitting RF with a great arm, above average athleticism and speed, and some surprising patience at the plate at times.  Keith Law tweeted that he'd be a top 5-8 pick in this year's draft if eligible.

The Cubs have become something of preferred destination for Cuban free agents.  This year they signed 3 players, most notably Gerardo Concepcion, who is reportedly friends with Soler, and Yasiel Balaguert, who flanked him in the OF for the Cuban youth team.  The other signee this year was RHP Carlos Martinez.

Other recent signees include LHP Franke Del Valle, C Yaniel Cabezas, and OFs Rubi Silva and Elisier Bonne.

With the Cub need for impact talent, they'll be in on this all the way. We'll keep you posted as always.

UPDATE: We may not have to wait as long as we think.   According to Kevin Goldstein...

Source indicates that Jorge Soler's agent, Barry Praver, has requested that offers for his client be submitted by Thursday, June 7.

Technically, according to BA's Ben Badler, Soler isn't 100% free.  He must still obtain what's called an "unblocking" license.  But that seems to be a formality.  MLB wouldn't announce the free agency without knowing that will be taken care of soon.

 

Filed under: International players

Tags: Jorge Soler

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  • Awesome news!!

    Gut feeling John is he going to be a cub, and were would you rank him as a prospect in our system.

  • In reply to Bilbo Baggins:

    I'd rank him in the top 3. Rizzo, Baez, Soler, Jackson. If they sign him, they'll also soon add the #6 pick to make it a pretty nice top 5.

  • Would be a great signing for sure. Getting him and barring any surprise in the draft would give the Cubs a couple new guys in the top 3-5 of the farm system. I wonder how getting Solar would change the draft strategy, if at all?

  • In reply to cowboy2024:

    Won't change it at all. The Cubs are looking to acquire impact talent regardless of position. They'll take whomever they think is the best player for that spot.

    There's also a chance they don't sign him, so they can't afford to pass up an OF'er they like better because they think they might get Soler.

  • Go get him!

  • In reply to Eddie:

    Spare no expense!

  • This kid's gonna make a lot of money, and I agree with the Cubs being the favorite, because we're in a position to over-pay if need be. With Soler, plus our three picks in the first 60 or so, plus whatever we get back in trades for vets, it's easy to see how the Cubs could have the best concentration of young talent in the league next year.

    Of course, it's going to take time before that young talent turns into Major League talent.

  • In reply to Taft:

    Cubs have a real opportunity here if they can sign Soler and with the 6 pick and three more in the top 68. Definng moment for Theo and the bunch.

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    You have to be excited about the potential of our farm system. Adding soler and the top 6 pick would be a nice replenish because a few of our top prospects will be up by July. Were starting to get that Tampa bay feel where every few years your consistently pump out impact players from your system instead of overpaying. How many of us would take Desmond Jennings over Carl Crawford right now?

  • In reply to Marcel Jenkins:

    Exactly. That's how Tampa is able to compete every year, they just keep reloading. Reminds me of the the Braves of the 90s.

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    In reply to John Arguello:

    Even though I was pretty young then (90s baby) I remember those Atlanta seems just pumping out player after player. Free agency almost seems optional for that FO. they could vacation during free agent spending season.

  • I wonder if this announcement has anything to do with the arrest of Martinez for human trafficking.

  • In reply to JeffK:

    It's possible, I suppose. I don't know, there's not a lot of specific info available on that.

  • I gotta believe that unless Buxton or Correa are available (which I doubt), the Cubs are going to take the best available pitcher left. The Cubs are loaded with position players so I think their going to take pitchers in 3 of the first 4 picks. Just my opinion.

  • In reply to Fitz:

    I do understand the Cubs need for pitching. Cubs won't draft on need because they need impact players in general. McCleod and Wilken are both "best player available" guys. If that guy happens to be a pitcher, they'll take him, but the likelihood is that it will be a position player.

    There is some high ceiling pitching talent available in the supplemental and 2nd round, so don't be surprised if the Cubs stock up on pitching there with the 3 picks they have in that part of the draft.

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    What is the next pick the Cubs have after 6th? If by some miracle a guy like giolito is still on the board by their next pick do they take that player even with possibly signablity or injury issues?

  • In reply to Marcel Jenkins:

    It's the signability that's an issue. With this new CBA, that option goes out the window. He won't sign for supplemental money when he has a good chance of being a top pick in 3 years.

  • On June 4th MLB will have 2012 draft. Only 1st round and compensation picks done that day, total of 60 picks. The Cubs have picks 6, 43 & 56

  • In reply to Cliffy46405:

    Thanks Cliffy. We'll get a good feel for their direction with 3 picks in the very first day.

  • john how long do u think it will be before we find out which team wins the bidding. i feel that usually they announce that a player has agreed to sign with a team and then a week or two later they announce that the contract has been signed and its a done deal.

  • In reply to jshmoran:

    Bidding apparently ends on June 7th, then I imagine they'll mull it over for a few days. I'm hoping we know by mid June, though it may not be until late June.

  • I think the chances of signing Soler are less than they were 2 months ago. The success of Cespedes along with teams trying to figure ways around the new CBA rules likely means more horses in this race. I'd like to be more optimistic, but too many other teams with lots of money from lucrative TV deals to think it's a slam dunk for the Cubs.

  • In reply to Cliffy46405:

    I agree, Cliffy. I was probably 80% sure before, I think I'm more 50/50 now.

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    Soler and Almora in the first round. Then we load the boat on Pitching. Let's not forget the possibility of also having a top 3 pick in next year's draft. This along with the talent we should get if and when we say goodbye to Dempster and Garza.

    Theo is stacking the deck...... Nice to see a plan unfolding in front of our eyes.....

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    Yes, I can say "Bidding War". :-)

  • Just look at that picture. Anybody else see a young Soriano in it?

  • OF of Jackson , Soler , and Almora sounds pretty darn good to me .

  • He's a must get. Flex that economic muscle while you can, Cubs, and get yourself another top ten type draft talent.

  • 20? Yeah right....20 going on 29

  • Oh man it would be huge to get this guy & add him to the upcoming draft class & international class, and then to what should be a strong class next year with a likelky top 3 pick. Unfortunately like you John, my optimism has waned to about a 50-50 feel.

    About the draft though, I think it's going to be a little more unpredictable than people think. I have to believe Theo & Co. will figure out some way to get around the new restrictions, which are not as bad as I first thought. The Cubs have the 8th highest amount to spend of all the clubs, but it is my understanding that only the first 10 rounds count for each teams bonus pool, of which the Cubs have 12 selections. Maybe then starting in round 11 they take some tough signs that still may be left on the board? Maybe all along, first 10 rounds included, the just keep taking the best player available regardless of signability, figuring they won't sign all 12 anyways, and that would increase the amount of their $7,933,900 bonus pool that they can spread around to the guys they can sign. Can't find info on going over for each individual slot.

    Also, last year the Cubs dished out only $6,559,950 to their top 10 picks, considerably less than they have to spend this time around, and as a whole, the entire 30 MLB clubs have only about 1% less to spend then ended up getting paid over the first 10 rounds. I think we may see some surprises, and I'm excited to see what Theo, Jed, Jason, & Tim can do here.

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