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The Chicago Cubs have been known to be in on 26-year-old Cuban outfielder Yoenis Cespedes for some time now, the big wigs of the organization having scouted him numerous times in the Dominican Republic. Now that Cespedes is on the verge of achieving residency there after playing for a week in the Dominican Winter League, his official free agency is going to begin soon.

And he says that, so far, the Chicago Cubs have shown him more love than any other team.

While Cespedes routinely lists about six interested teams – the Cubs as one of them – he hasn’t yet, to my knowledge, named any kind of leader for his services, which makes sense: he’s not a free agent yet, so it’s hard to have a leader.

But Cespedes admitted yesterday that, even in advance of his official free agency, the Cubs have shown more interest in him than any other team.

“Of all the teams who have come,” Cespedes said yesterday, “the one that has been the most interested in me has been the Chicago Cubs.”

Cespedes added that the Cubs have taken him to dinner multiple times in an attempt to convince Cespedes of the virtues of eventually joining the organization. But he was quick to caution that, just because the Cubs are the most interested, it doesn’t necessarily mean he’s going to sign with them.

“I’ve eaten a few times with them and talked a lot, but that does not mean it is safe for me to come sign with them,” Cespedes said. “I’m just telling it like it is, they have shown more interest than others.”

Until now, it has been believed that the Marlins would be among Cespedes’ highest bidders (the team’s president recently said the Marlins would be bidding extremely aggressively for the outfielder), but it sounds like it’s safe to put the Cubs right up there.

Even if Cespedes is only revealing this information in an effort to drive up his price from another team, it’s clear that – unless he’s flat out lying about the Cubs’ efforts – the Cubs are aggressively courting Cespedes, and will be aggressively pursuing him once he reaches free agency. I’ve said for some time now that, given the Cubs’ cost-cutting offseason and future plans, a strong bid for Cespedes (and fellow Cuban Jorge Soler) makes a great deal of sense.

Cespedes is expected to need some time in the minor leagues to adjust to both the American game and the American life, but would like to participate in Spring Training. I would expect the situation to be resolved long before then.

(An aside on the age: while it could have just been a typo or a translation issue, I’d be lying if I said it didn’t make me ever-so-slightly nervous to see Cespedes listed as 27 in the article, rather than 26. Cespedes’ reported birthday is October 10, 1985, which would make him 26 for another nine months.)

  • EQ76

    Shoot, for all we know, he could be 29 or 30.. he’s worth the risk but hopefully not for too much money.

  • Ben

    I hope we get him. His price should be dropping after his abysmal Winter Ball performance. It was a mistake for him to enter the Winter Leagues cold after taking so much time off. A win for us if we get him cheaper.

  • Caleb Duncan

    Couple things in still a little Foggy about Brett. Why has it taken him until he is 26 for teams to get interested in him? I mean compared to all other Dominican, Cuban prospects he is really old. Another question is if we do sign him are the Cubs expecting him to be an every day starter this season in the Bigs after he is done with his stint in the Minors to get adjusted to America?

    • WGNstatic

      For Cuban players, remember they have to defect before they can sign with a big league team.

      • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

        This is indeed the answer to the first question. As for his role, yes, I’d say whatever team signs him is very much expecting he’ll be a full-time starter as soon as mid-season, and as late as next season.

  • die hard

    He will not do well in April, May and September in Chcgo and other cold weather cities as he has known only warm weather…not a good risk unless he signs an incentive laden contract with successive team options…he would do better to sign with Marlins

  • dob2812

    So this is a guy who has effectively never played above A ball, never seen anything like major league secondary stuff, apparently has a swing that would require fairly major adjustments to enable him to hit major league fastballs (it’s too long, or so I read), and who might be 26 but then again might not be (even if he is, that’s still pretty old to be coming from an A-ball level, no?). I don’t understand where the hype is coming from. Can anyone link to anything that suggests he can be an effective major-leaguer?

    • die hard

      Answer: Front office is hyping to sell tkts….nothing more or less….this front office is good at stirring the pot but at the end of the day the concoction is inedible….their pr dept is best in the biz and tkt sales prove it….all hat and no cattle is what theyd say in Texas…..would anyone in their right mind shell out thousands for a seasons tkt given moves so far without the hype?….stay tuned for more until all seasons tkts sold

      • dob2812

        Diehard, it’s ok, I’m not trying to go down that route. I’m very much on board with what the front office are doing. I will not have a problem with them giving Cespedes €30m because I know if they do it will be because they believe he has a legitimate chance to be an everyday player. I’m just talking from a wider perspective; has anyone actually said this guy could be really good, or even just normal good? Everything I’ve read sounds very much like all hype and no trousers.

      • bluekoolaidaholic

        “All hat and no cattle”, lol, I love it!

    • Andrew

      You gotta trust the scouts on this one a little. We’ve had some good players from the Caribean in Castro, Marmol, and others. they’ve been watching this guy for a long time and strongly believe he can be the future in the outfield. Also from what I’ve heard, teams in the cuban leagues would probably be AAA level talent, so to say hes been playing A ball is a misnomer.

      • Garrett

        Could not agree more, we have sat down with him, seen what he has to offer, at worst he develops into an average outfielder, but obviously there is room for growth and I believe we have to trust Rudy and see what he can do with the obvious freakish athletic ability of the kid. Yes it’s a gamble but heck these days what isn’t.

      • Tommy

        I don’t know squat about Cuban baseball other than what I read. This is just one link that discusses how non-MLB leagues translate into MLB farm system rankings:
        http://www.nationalsarmrace.com/?p=3008
        And what was said about the Cuban league, which matches everything I’ve ever read:
        •Cuba: per Dave Cameron (mentioned in a chat, need the link) the “general consensus” is that the Cuban pro league is about a High-A level of talent.

        I do agree with you on your point about trusting our scouts, though. If they think he’s worth the time, then I’m sold!

  • CubFan Paul

    i wonder if his residency in the Dominican is all about greasin palms..

  • Sam

    YES!! A THOUSAND TIMES YES!!

    • Bazfan1234

      No, a thousand times!

      This guy may be a physical specimen, but he has already shown he cannot hit the low-away slider and all he hits is ground balls. I would not want the Cubs to invest 50-60 million on a guy that has never seen pitching above A ball. He also descreased his value by playing in the VZ league recently and looking over-matched.

      • Bails17

        Who CAN hit the low and away slider?

        • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

          Me. Right here.

          • Bails17

            Yeah…me too.  Off of my 9 year old daughter!

        • http://cubbiekingdom.wordpress.com hansman1982

          You can’t?  Wow, have fun making it in the T-ball league…

        • Bazfan1234

          Maybe I should have stated that differently, he has showed in the Dominican Winter League that he is prone to swing and miss at the low and away slider.

      • Mick

        Did you watch the games to see if he looked over matched? What were his at bats like? Did he go deep into the counts? I’m not liking how people are making generalizations about a player they’ve never seen live. Plus, how do you know the pitchers he’s faced have been A-level? Do you make it to Cuba often? Based on past experience, I’d put more value on a Cuban league player than I would a Japanese league player.

        Yonder Alonso
        Danys Báez
        Yuniesky Betancourt
        Alberto Castillo
        Aroldis Chapman
        José Contreras
        Yunel Escobar
        Liván Hernández
        Yunesky Maya
        Juan Miranda
        Kendry Morales
        Brayan Peña
        Alexei Ramirez
        Raul Valdes
        Dayan Viciedo
        Leonys Martin
        Jose Julio Ruiz
        Leslie Anderson
        Adonis Garcia
        Yasiel Balaguer
        Yadel Marti
        Yasser Gomez
        J.P. Arencibia
        Danny Valencia
        Yasmani Grandal
        Jose Iglesias
        Noel Arguelles

        • Bazfan1234

          This is strictly my opinion but I just do not want to see the Cubs spend 50-60 million on a guy that is 25 years old that has never played in the minor league in the US.

          Game 1
          Yoenis Cespedes strikes out swinging.
          Yoenis Cespedes strikes out swinging.
          Yoenis Cespedes strikes out swinging.
          Yoenis Cespedes hit by pitch.
          Game 2
          Yoenis Cespedes grounds out, shortstop Pedro Florimon to first baseman Mauro Gomez.
          Yoenis Cespedes strikes out swinging.
          Yoenis Cespedes pops out to catcher Wilkin Castillo in foul territory.
          Yoenis Cespedes pops out to first baseman Mauro Gomez.
          Game 3
          Yoenis Cespedes strikes out swinging.
          Yoenis Cespedes singles on a soft ground ball to third baseman Carlos Triunfel.
          Yoenis Cespedes pops out to third baseman Carlos Triunfel.
          Yoenis Cespedes grounds out, shortstop Anderson Hernandez to first baseman Robinson Cancel.
          Game 4
          Yoenis Cespedes grounds out, third baseman Fernando Tatis to first baseman Mauro Gomez.
          Yoenis Cespedes lines out to left fielder Denis Phipps.
          Yoenis Cespedes grounds into a force out, third baseman Fernando Tatis to second baseman Julio Lugo. Jesse Gutierrez out at 2nd.
          Yoenis Cespedes grounds out softly, catcher Wilkin Castillo to first baseman Mauro Gomez.

          If you look at his stats he plays poorly and if you look at the play-by-play you see that he struggles mightly. Not only does he strike out, but he is also pulling the ball and managed to only hit one ball out of the infield so far.

          Cespedes is 1-15, 5 K’s, 3 pop outs, 5 ground outs, 1 line out.

          • Tommy

            Those numbers aren’t very encouraging, but at the same time, I don’t think it’s a fair to assess his talents based on 15 AB’s.  He just got to a new country, no idea how long it’s been since he’s had some live batting experience, and he hasn’t seen any of these pitchers yet.

            I am trusting in our scouting department knowing his worth.

            I feel your pain, though.  I’ve been having doubts about this guy myself, but the truth is, there just isn’t enough to go on right now to form a strong opinion.

          • Skinner

            Fun with small sample size! Let me try that with Player X over a fifteen AB period from last year:

            Player X grounds out to pitcher
            Player X singles to SHALLOW right
            Player X grounds out to 2B
            Player X grounds out to 2B
            Player X grounds out to 2B
            Player X flies out to SHALLOW right
            Player X flies out to CF
            Player X strikes out swinging.
            Player X grounds out to 2B
            Player X strikes out swinging.
            Player X grounds out to SS
            Player X singles to center
            Player X strikes out swinging.
            Player X walks.
            Player X flies out to CF.

            As we see Player X struggles mightily, managing only two weak singles in 15 plate appearances. 2-14 with 3 strikeouts, only 1 walk. Tons of weak ass groundouts. Based on this evidence, Albert Pujols–I mean Player X–shouldn’t even be in baseball.

            Now, so we’re clear, I’m not saying Cespedes is Albert Pujols, just that we don’t know what he is yet and this 15 AB sample tells us next to nothing, as any hitter in any league can look bad over such a small amount of plate appearances. I agree Theo shouldn’t pay 50-60MM and I don’t believe he will. But for roughly half of that amount, I think, with YC’s tools and talent and such, he’s worth the gamble.

  • Brian

    Don’t do this to me Brett. Your getting my hopes up and then he will go elsewhere and I will feel like crap. I hope we get him and Soler and then find a way to deal Byrd and Sori, but that is in a perfect world I suppose.

  • The Dude Abides

    No one is sure how old this guy is, his performance in winter ball has been terrible, what is the attraction for the money it will cost? We had more info on Fuky and he was more of a bust than not and couldn’t wait for him to leave. Why during a rebuilding time spend money on a gamble when there are known players. I think Theo is caught up in his own hype that he is all knowing. I hope we miss out on this guy and stick to gambling on younger unknowns or at a minimum players with stats from reliable sources. From what I have read he hopefully produces a Soriano type season 25 HR’s and 85 RBI’s, 250 average after he gets up to speed on MLB. Gotta be a better way to spend money…

    • Andrew

      .250 average is probably a bit pessimistic considering he hit .330 in cuba. Also, even if he does hit for those kind of numbers, its not that bad considering that he can actually play defense and run the bases well (may not steal many bases, but can definitely go first to third on a lot of hits). Also, we might not have to pay him that much since there are a lot of unknowns here.

    • Hawkeyegrad

      I think this is where the front office earns their pay. It is their job to determine if this guy is the real deal or not and how much he is worth.

      The Cubs are in a better position then most suitors as they do not need him to be their starting CF/LF right now. They can give him some time in iowa to acclimate.

      I think his defense translates as he will likely be a league average CF and a plus LF, he makes contact and draws walks which tends to carry through although he will regress in both areas facing MLB pitching (He struck out just 40 times in 354 at bats in 2011 and walked 49 times), and he has much needed power that may translate to 20-25 hrs per year which would be plus power for CF and league average for LF.

      The strikeout to walk ratio is one thing that rings true throughout his career and I think that maybe the key here. Using the transitive property here, according to the attached hardball times article, a 25% K rate in college equates to a 21% K rate in Single A and a 14% K rate in college translates to a 20% K rate in the MLB. Yoenis’ K rate is 11%. If Cuba compares to Single A, his K rate in college would be around 13%-14% which would translate to around a 18%-20% strikeout rate in the bigs which is a little higher then the league average of 16% but in the ball park.

      I think the numbers support potential of a slightly above league average player with obvious risk because he is being projected there. A league average player is worth approximately $10 million per year so a 5 year $30 million contract is in the ballpark of risk/reward here in my opinion (40% discount for potential wash-out rate). Start exceeding that and I start to get nervous. I would rather put money into someone with risk and some upside at this point in the process then to buy a 1 WAR player with limited upside with the same money.

      http://www.hardballtimes.com/main/article/how-many-strikeouts-is-too-many/

      http://www.minorleagueball.com/2011/4/22/2123847/the-significance-of-minor-league-k-rates

    • King Jeff

      Considering that there are 6-8 other teams that have been consistently scouting him for the last two years, I don’t think this is a case of Theo believing his own hype.  The Marlins group has already come out and said that they are going hard after this guy.  There is something to the hype.  Even if fans who have never seen a single game of Cuban league baseball don’t think he can play.  I am going to trust the scouts of all of the teams tripping over themselves to get this guys signed before the new international signing rules take effect.  I think some people here are drinking too much of their own koolaid, and think that they know more about a player that they’ve never seen play than the guys who scout players for a living (the people actually hyping this guy).

  • die hard

    The club is disrespecting all of its fine minor leaguers by looking outside the org and country for a miracle…what does that say to these kids who are busting their tails for a shot in the bigs?….dont be surprised if some minor leaguers in system demand trades…

    • Matt

      What outfielders outside of Brett Jackson is such a high prospect that can “demand” anything? This is the most ludicrous thing I have heard on this. MINOR LEAGUERS HAVE NO CONTROL OVER THEIR SITUATION. They have to play to impress not only the Cubs, but other teams wanting to trade for them. We have no Bryce Harpers in our system.

    • scorecardpaul

      die hard I try real hard to ignore most of your posts, but you must just be stupid??

      The stuff you say makes no sense at all.  I hope people on this site learn to ignore you as well.

      minor league ball players NEVER demand to be traded

      • jerry

        I never pay attention to die hard . For that i never read what better news writes either.They sure don’t seem like cubs fans that’s for sure.

    • DocWimsey

      Why stop there? I say, let’s honor those hard working Cubs minor leaguers by skipping the 2012 draft! I mean, imagine how devastating it must feel to work so hard, only to have the Cubs draft a whole new slate of players 12 months later. I don’t know about you, but I’d get a major case of “Middle Child Syndrome” then and there.

      • Andrew

        ya this reminds me of every minor league mutiny that there is whenever a free agent is signed or trade is made.

    • Jim

      Thanks, die hard – I needed a good laugh on such a dreary day. I actually laughed out loud, causing a few people in the department to wonder what was so funny.

  • rich

    I think Soler is a better risk and much younger if you can believe them about their age.

  • TonyP

    This is going to be Fukudome all over again.

    • DocWimsey

      No. For all people dissed him, Fukudome always had a good OBP because he had such a great batting eye. What little we know of Cespedes says that he does not have a good batting eye: he’s great at getting his bat on the ball, but although that works against minor league pitching, it won’t against MLB pitching.

      And unlike Fukudome, Cespedes won’t be getting on base all of the time.

      • TonyP

        I just didn’t mean the same type of player,  I meant that he will be a disappointment as Fukudome was.

  • Kyle

    If it’s Fukudome except several million a year cheaper, I’d be pretty happy with that.

    But the comp doesn’t make a lot of sense, as you said.

  • fettets_bueller

    I still think the smartest thing we can do it buy him and Soler, especially Soler. But I also love that he’s playing baseball right now, and doing it poorly, pressing at the plate. Driving down his cost, making him an even better investment for the Cubs. The more he presses now, the better it is for the Cubs.

    • DocWimsey

      The sample size for Cespedes is so small as to mean zilch. And if he is truly performing subpar, then it is more probably due to rustiness than to “pressing.”

      People who like “attitude” probably should be applauding this. Financially, it’s dumb for Cespedes to be playing: he cannot make himself look better than legend makes him whereas he can (in so few games) look pretty bad, and there is also the chance of injury.

      My guess is that the guy just loves to play baseball.

      • http://cubbiekingdom.wordpress.com hansman1982

        Agree, and if you are someone like the Cubs you want him out there playing right now, get the bat swinging again before spring training…who knows, he might do poorly enough in a small sample size where you can knock a couple million off the final price tag.

        • DocWimsey

          Well, I still am concerned that he does not have the ability to recognize pitches. However, we need a LOT more data before we can really conclude that.

          (On the other hand, I would like a little evidence that he CAN recognize pitches, too! Again, a LOT more games than we have available are needed: I remember Shawon Dunston taking 2 walks in a week once…..)

          • http://cubbiekingdom.wordpress.com hansman1982

            I have a feeling, if we sign him we probably won’t see him until September.

            • Mick

              If Byrd and Soriano get shipped at the trade or waiver deadline it’d be fun to see Cespedes, Jackson and DeJesus in the OF.

              • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

                It would be a hell of a good defensive outfield, that’s for sure. I’d love to be a flyball pitcher with those guys behind me – Travis Wood might have a career year.

                • Smitty

                  Which makes me wonder if even Dejesus will be here are the trade deadline if he plays up to his normal levels he would be a good OF to pick up for a playoff run.

                  Brett, from everything you have read/heard, do you think the braintrust would move Dejesus after signing him to a 2 year deal after only half a season?

                  • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

                    Absolutely.

                    I don’t know that I’d go so far as to say that they signed DeJesus with that intention, but they’ve said – I’ve heard both Theo and Jed say it at different times – that they came into the offseason thinking that they might try to sign guys who could be useful trade pieces in the future. It wasn’t a primary directive, but it was a part of the calculus.

                    To me, guys like DeJesus and Maholm fit that mold.

                • DocWimsey

                  And when the wind is blowing out, we can admire their hustle as they quickly get back to the wall to watch it fly out!

                  Seriously, on normal days and in other parks, that outfield probably would be close to an extra every couple of games. (And, yes, 81 extra outs is great!)

  • OHBearCub

    All of the sudden nobody trusts Epstein and his legion of scouts that he has employed to turn this organization around. Yu Darvish pitched against Double A and maybe a few Triple A level players in the Japanese league yet everyone thought he would be a savior. Now the Rangers can’t even get him signed to a contract. Maybe they worked him out next to one of their known commodities and are having second thoughts. Theo didn’t go crazy with his check book on the Darvish bid or we would have won. If he thinks this guy is worth the money okay we have to trust him. My guess is the Cubs don’t sign this guy and they ink Soler who is younger and can be molded into our organization. Cespedes could be like Sammie Sosa and turn into a presence everyone wanted gone. I liked Sammie he was great for the Cubs until he got to big for the Cubs management to handle. I don’t know about any of this. I don’t necessarily agree with every move Theo has made but maybe he is better informed. I think Cespedes has a big ego … the YouTube video kinda brings that to the forefront. The cubs are going to spend some money somewhere. Maybe these two Cubans are the right place and maybe they are not. I would error on the side of caution and let someone else take the risk Cespedes and focus on signing Soler. He will be sent to Daytona Hi A or two the Smokies AA. He may be moldable to the Cubs Way so to speak.

  • Edwin

    I think part of the appeal about Cespedes is that all the Cubs would need to do to get him is pay cash. Plus, he’d be cost controlled for several years, and is probably about to hit his prime. I don’t think he’ll be a superstar, and he probably won’t live up to any “super prospect” hype, but if he can be an above average MLB player, he’s easily worth signing.

  • mister_rob

    From what I’ve seen of Cespedes he has one skill that is unteachable. Opposite field power. Dont care if he is facing minor league equivalent pitching. When a guy can routinely drive the ball to the opposite field like he can, he has legitimate ability

    Add in real defensive ability and good speed and you there is a decent chance you get a less selective version of Bobby Abreu

    • OlderStyle

      When I saw the video of Cespedes he reminded me of Vlad Guerrero in his approach at the plate. Hope he has some of that kind of lightning in his wrists.

      • Mick

        Cespedes reminds me of Raul Mondesi. It’s hard to get a read on him though because the only video is of the WBC and his freak workout video. There’s an article of Cespedes written by the “Cuban Peter Gammons” http://www.baseballdecuba.com/NewSite/newsContainer.asp?id=2595 but some may view it as a “hack-job.” I personally think it’s an interesting article but some of the personal stuff could have been left out.

        Cespedes is worth a shot and it’s not like the Cubs don’t have the money. With as frugal as Hoyer and Epstein have been so far this offseason, I could definately see an incentive laden contract with club options to minimize the overall risk.

        • OlderStyle

          thanks for the link, I’ll check it out. Yeah, I can see some Mondesi, too. It’s the movement in his hands and his long extension on the swings, plus it seems like the ball really explodes off the bat, I instantly thought “Vlad”.

          He seems like a decent risk. Hope we can sign him and the youngster, Soler.

          If we do it would be imperative to move Soriano asap.

  • bob

    Is he intentionally driving the ball to the opposite field, or is his bat already too slow to pull even the sub-MLB pitching he’s facing? Could be a red flag there.

    • mister_rob

      It was mentioned earlier that although he has an agressive approach at the plate, he doesnt K all that much. I think the fact that instead of having to pull everything he can sit back a little longer and still put a charge in the ball is a main reason for that

      Much easier to get fooled when you are looking to pull the ball

    • King Jeff

      He played in the same league as Aroldis Chapman, no shame in being a little bit late on a 103 mph fastball.  Be careful when you assume he only faced “sub-MLB” pitching.

  • jandersonjr81 father of Caden

    I have said this a million times before. Cespedes is a must. Soler would be fine also. I guess I’m higher on Cespedes then anybody else, but the guys reminds me of a pre injured Bo Jackson. 30 million is nothing for this guy, even 60 mil will turn into a steal. If we can eat 18 to trade Z for nothing, we better be willing to sign this guy.

    • cubsnivy56

      I like them both but I see Soler as a must while it would be great to get Cespedes.

  • JulioZuleta

    The age thing definitely caught my eye too. I want him, but not nearly as much as most. He’s pretty old for a “prospect”. Even if he takes a couple years to adjust, you’re talking about a guy who’s 28-29 (at least) before he really hits his stride.

  • djriz

    Hey everyone, longtime listener, first time caller. We all need to calm down and trust Theo..it’s obvious he is finding as many young, high upside players as he can. Cespedes fits this mold…..all you do is fill up your system with type and hope some make it….IMO the more you s8gn, draft or trade for, the more chances you have of winning the ‘star’ lottery. Better than waiting for a 32 year old to ‘find it’.

    It just means ‘wait til next year’ has hope.

  • joejoecubs

    I agree with djriz.  Why do we all act like we know whats going on more than Theo and Co?  I trust whatever moves those guys want to make because they are the all-knowing and they want a championship just as much as we do.  However, as far as Cespedes goes, I am not too thrilled with the idea, but I am also willing to admit that just because I read a few blogs every day and listen to the radio that I really don’t know exactly what the upsides/downsides to signing the Cuban can be.  He could blow and there’s another 30 or so million down the drain.  But like I said, Epstein is in the position he is because he is the best at what he does and if the deal ends up happening, than I back it 100 %.  I’m much more excited to see what Brett Jackson can do this spring.

  • die hard

    wake me when he reminds someone of the combo of Roberto Clemente, Hank Aaron, Willie Mays, and Ichiro Suzuki

    • ferrets_bueller

      …and Marco Scutaro.

  • http://bleachernation loyal100more

    bid aggressive, but not stupid… well let him be a let down in florida before we give him the big bucks… im i the only one who feels this guy is a complete bust waiting to happen?

  • http://bleachernation loyal100more

    i mean Lahair is 3 years older(maybe we dont really know) and hes killing AAA and comes in at a much cheaper price. id bet on his major league success if i was in vegas, long before id drop millions on an unproven over hyped work in progress at best. soler looks like a way more worthwhile gamble.

  • Cubsin

    Hey guys, I just realized that if the Cubs go crazy and pay $60 million for Cespedes and $40 million for Soler and they’re both busts, none of us will have lost a single dime, and the Ricketts family won’t miss a single meal.

    I seem to be unique around here. I expect Theo and Jed to be right 60-65% of the time, which is significanly better than most management teams. With those odds in their favor, the more acquisitions they make, the better for the Cubs. If they can sign Cespedes, it will be a good thing, even if he subsequently disappoints us all. The same is true for Soler.

    • Kyle

      The Cubs have finite resources, and thus any use of resources comes with an opportunity cost. The opportunity cost of signing $100 million in busts is significant to the team’s long-term success, which is something we *do* care about.

    • http://CubbiesCrib.com Luke

      Actually, $60 mil for Cespedes and $40 mil for Soler might be pretty good deals, if those amounts are spread over the minimum six years of team control. That would be $10 million a year for Cespedes and a little under $7 million a year for Soler.

      $10 million per is about as high as I’d be willing to go on Cespedes, so that one works for me. At that amount, he’d only need to average a WAR of roughly 2 per season to be worth his contract. Since I think his dWAR alone will be greater than 1, I don’t see that being too much of a stretch, even if he does struggle at the plate.

      Soler at ~$7 million per makes me more nervous, even though he probably has the higher ceiling. He’ll probably spend two or three years in the minors at best, so the Cubs would have up to $21 million invested in him before ever sees the majors. That’s a little harder to swallow.

  • Rooster

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kREZHmOR1bg

    Everybody has to watch this. It’s like watching a combo of Vlad and Sammy Sosa. Watch the HOP…if the Cubs sign him the HOP returns to Wrigley. I LOVE THIS!

  • Rooster

    Forget it the others I want Cespedes in a Cubs uni NOW! NOW THEO!

  • DaveB23

    Brett, do you think its possible that Ricketts has given the green light to Theo to sign this (these) guy(s), no matter what the cost? Does Ricketts have the balls to offer a green light like that?

    Given the fact that they’re trying to build with young players and with the upcoming CBA restrictions, I think this is the perfect opportunity for Ricketts to show once again that he’ll do whatever it takes to build a Winner the right way (obviously the whole Theo thing was a great first showing)

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