The Chicago Cubs already had an extremely uphill battle if they were going to have a serious shot at Cuban superprospect Yoan Moncada, who is currently in the States, awaiting clearance from the U.S. Government to sign with an MLB team. Once that clearance comes, the expectation is that Moncada will sign for tens of millions of dollars sooner rather than later – and if the “sooner” comes before July, the Cubs will not be able to seriously bid on him thanks to IFA penalties incurred last year.
Convincing Moncada to wait until July to sign – with the lure of an over-the-top offer most likely being the only way to sway him – is going to be tough, given that the Yankees and Red Sox are reportedly hot for Moncada, and have blown their IFA budgets already this year. And what about that other deep-pocketed team that often spends huge sums of money on international players?
Yes, the Dodgers are in, too:
Source: #Dodgers aggressively pursued Yoan Lopez but came up short. Will now shift attention to OF Yoan Moncada. Expect a private workout.
— Jesse Sanchez (@JesseSanchezMLB) January 13, 2015
The Dodgers, unlike the Cubs, are free to bid as much as they’d like on Moncada, and the bidding could go as high as $30 to $40 million (plus an equal amount in IFA overage tax). Indeed, Dave Cameron thinks it could actually reach $50 million (and thus $100 million in total cost).
With so many deep pockets at the table, it’s even more difficult to see the Cubs realistically being able to offer enough over the top of the Yankees, Red Sox, Dodgers (and whoever else) to entice Moncada to wait several months for his payday.
So, once again, we’re left hoping for America bureaucracy to do its thing, and take an unbelievably long time clearing Moncada to sign.
(Aside: I find it interesting that the Dodgers – with all of their money – “came up short” on a Cuban pitcher whom they pursued “aggressively.” It serves as a reminder that *every* team has financial limits, and even the richest of teams sometimes misses out on guys they want.)