So, you’ve no doubt noticed that Jorge Soler chatter has picked back up in the last few days. It could be meaningless – a downturn in the 24-hour news cycle, prompting a thoughtless grab at the hottest name writers can plausibly throw back out there.
Or, it could be that we’re getting close.
When Soler’s countrymate, Yoenis Cespedes, was close to achieving residency in the Dominican Republic after a month or so of little action on his rumor mill, you started to hear his name more frequently. The rumors weren’t always specifically-tied to his impending residency, mind you, it was just that his name re-entered our consciousness. Soon, he had his residency, then free agency, and then, in one fell swoop, his work visa and a contract with the Oakland A’s.
We’re still waiting on word of the 20-year-old studly prospect’s residency in the DR, but Soler’s name keeps popping back up, about a month after the heat was last on. I’m not sure it is meaningful, but I do know that, with Minor League seasons getting ready to kick off in a few weeks, Soler – and his new team – will want to get signed soon so that he can get going on a full season of work.
And, about that new team. Since the resurgence of Soler rumors in the last few days, we’ve almost exclusively heard one team named: the Cubs. Well, we can add another team to this particular set of rumors, but it comes with good news, too. From Alex Speier:
According to a major league source, the Red Sox do plan to pursue Cuban outfielder Jorge Soler, a 20-year-old who is awaiting approval by Major League Baseball to become an international amateur free agent. Though still considered very raw, Soler has tremendous power, with the potential to hit 30-plus homers a season in the majors if he proves capable of fulfilling his potential.
That said, the Sox – like most of the baseball industry – expect that the Cubs are likely to win the bidding for Soler.
In sum, the Cubs will have competition when Soler is officially declared a free agent. They may have the inside track, and they may be the most aggressive suitor. But Soler is very much a chicken that hasn’t yet hatched. I’m cautiously optimistic. And patient.
In the meantime, we’ll have to see if the current uptick in Soler chatter continues until we get word that he is a resident of the DR.