Cubs Sign Jen-Ho Tseng

August 12: Tseng has officially signed his deal with the Cubs, reports MLB.com's Carrie Muskat (via Twitter). 

July 26: The Cubs have signed 18-year-old Taiwanese right-hander Jen-Ho Tseng for a $1.625MM bonus, according to MLB.com's Jesse Sanchez (on Twitter). Sanchez adds that top international prospect Eloy Jimenez, who agreed to terms with the Cubs earlier this month, will officially sign with the team next week.

Sanchez ranked Tseng as the No. 29 prospect in this year's international crop, noting that his broad frame bodes well for future durability. Tseng's fastball touches 95 mph and sits comfortably in the low 90s, according to Sanchez, who adds that Tseng also has a feel for a curveball and slider. Tseng continued to draw interest from the Twins even after the initial reports that he was nearing a deal with the Cubs surfaced on July 9.

The Cubs have already signed Gleyber Torres for $1.7MM, Jefferson Mejia for $850K, Erling Moreno for $650K and Johan Matos for $270K, and their agreement with Jimenez is for $2.8MM. Despite having acquired additional bonus money from the Orioles and Astros, the Cubs are on pace to vastly exceed their $5.52MM international bonus pool.

I analyzed the Cubs' international expenditures earlier in the month, noting at the time that they were likely facing a strict penalty for exceeding their pool by 10 to 15 percent. The penalty for such an overage would be a 100 percent tax on the overage as well as severe restrictions on 2014-15 spending that would prevent the team from signing a player for any more than $500K. However, given the size of Tseng's bonus, it appears that the Cubs will exceed their bonus pool by 15 percent or more, which would mean they won't be able to sign a player for more than $250K in 2014-15 (in addition to the 100 percent tax on the overage).

Because teams cannot acquire more than 50 percent of their initial international bonus pool, the maximum bonus pool for the Cubs would be $6.836MM. With Tseng signing for $1.625MM, the Cubs have committed $7.895MM to international prospects. That's $1.059MM over their maximum international bonus pool, or a 15.5 percent overage, suggesting that the team is likely facing the maximum penalties for international spending next summer.



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