Miami Marlins Rumors

Miami Marlins trade and free agent rumors from MLBTradeRumors.com.

Heyman’s Latest: Hamels/Jays, Lucroy, Baez, Correa, Alvarez

Jon Heyman of CBS Sports has published the latest installment of his weekly Inside Baseball column, and he kicks it off by reporting that the Blue Jays have inquired on Cole Hamels. However, Heyman hears that Hamels was unwilling to waive his no-trade clause to allow a trade to Toronto, which is a blow for both clubs. The Jays desperately need help in both the rotation and the bullpen, and the Phillies, Heyman notes, would love to get their hands on young pitchers with the upside of Aaron Sanchez and Daniel Norris. The Blue Jays have a bit of financial leeway after going with inexpensive options at second base, center field and left field, and Heyman writes that the Blue Jays are expected to look at other potential front-line starters this summer as they become available. (He speculatively mentions Johnny Cueto and Scott Kazmir, though neither’s available just yet.) Additionally, Heyman notes that Blue Jays manager John Gibbons’ job is safe, as GM Alex Anthopoulos has a strong relationship with the skipper and recognizes that the team’s problems are roster-related and shouldn’t be pinned on Gibbons.

Some more highlights from the column, though it’s worth a read in its entirety…

  • The Braves are said to be disappointed in the play of Christian Bethancourt, even from a defensive standpoint, and recently inquired with the Brewers on Jonathan Lucroy. However, Atlanta executives were told by the Brewers that Lucroy isn’t available at this time. That the Brewers wouldn’t trade Lucroy isn’t a shock; he’s owed a very affordable $4MM in 2016 with a $5.25MM option for the 2017 season, so even if the team can’t quickly right the ship, he’d still have enormous trade value at the 2016 trade deadline. More interesting, to me, is that the Braves would so quickly look for an upgrade over Bethancourt and that they’re acting somewhat as buyers. Lucroy, of course, could be called a long-term piece that would be around to help the team when its rebuild is closer to completion. However, acquiring him would surely require the sting of parting with some of the key components of that rebuild.
  • Some rival execs feel that the Cubs are willing to part with Javier Baez and Dan Vogelbach in trades, in part because each was drafted under the previous administration and is not held in as high a regard by the new front office. Each player comes with issues, however, as Baez is trying to cut down on his swing and improve his contact skills, while a scout described first baseman Vogelbach as a “30 fielder” to Heyman (in reference to the 20-80 scouting scale).
  • There are members of the Astros‘ field staff that want to see Carlos Correa with the team right now, but Houston will likely keep him in the minors for another month or so in order to lessen the risk of Correa achieving Super Two status. I’ll add that the Astros will have a more legitimate claim that Correa still needs minor league time than other teams in similar situations have had in the past. Correa is still just 20 years old and has only nine games of experience at the Triple-A level, though he’s continued his brilliant work at the plate there, hitting .326/.362/.558 with a pair of homers. Also of interest to Astros fans — or to fans of teams needing outfield help — the Astros are on the lookout for starting pitching upgrades, and outfield prospect Preston Tucker “seems to be available.” Tucker recently made his MLB debut and has a .963 OPS through 34 plate appearances to go along with a strong minor league track record.
  • Marlins right-hander Henderson Alvarez has been pitching for years with a partial tear of the ulnar collateral ligament in his right elbow, according to Heyman. Some have described it as a “90 percent tear,” but he’s been able to pitch effectively in spite of the issue. Alvarez wouldn’t be the first to pitch through a UCL tear; Ervin Santana and Adam Wainwright are both recent examples of pitchers who pitched for many seasons with partially torn UCLs. Wainwright ultimately underwent Tommy John, though Santana’s is said to have healed and is no longer an issue. In another Marlins-related note, Heyman hears that pitching coach Chuck Hernandez is “under the microscope” with both Jarred Cosart and Steve Cishek struggling greatly in 2015.
  • Brewers starters Kyle Lohse and Matt Garza have little trade value due to their 2015 struggles, but Lohse’s lesser financial commitment and superior clubhouse reputation give him more value. The team is reluctant to trade not only Lucroy, but shortstop Jean Segura as well. The Brewers are a bit more open to dealing Carlos Gomez than that pair, as Gomez is closer to free agency (he’s controlled through 2016).
  • The Mets remain reluctant to trade any of their top arms, as they’ve seen on multiple occasions how quickly Tommy John surgery or other injuries can thin out a club’s depth. (Matt Harvey, Zack Wheeler, Jacob deGrom and Steven Matz have all had TJ in their careers.) The Mets are also not rushing to find a shortstop, but they have indeed been “all over the map” in terms of trade possibilities with the Cubs.
  • Coco Crisp‘s neck injury is apparently quite serious, and there’s a fear that the oft-injured Athletics outfielder will ultimately require surgery that could bring his season to an end.
  • The Blue Jays would still like to extend both Jose Bautista and Edwin Encarnacion, but there have yet to be serious discussions with either slugger’s camp. Both players are controlled through the end of the 2016 season.

Amateur Notes: Draft, Fulmer, Kolek, Martinez

The game of baseball is struggling to maintain youth participation, writes Brian Costa of the Wall Street Journal, who says that the trend poses real concerns for an otherwise thriving sport. Newly-minted commissioner Rob Manfred has honed in on the issue since taking office, saying that “the biggest predictor of fan avidity as an adult is whether you played the game.” It’s a fascinating read that’s well worth your time.

Let’s check in on some amateur notes from around the game:

  • ESPN.com’s Keith Law (Insider link) posts his first mock draft as June 8th draws near. While acknowledging that it is still early, Law predicts that the Diamondbacks will take Vanderbilt shortstop Dansby Swanson with the first overall pick while the Astros will add LSU shortstop Alex Bregman and high school outfielder Kyle Tucker with the second and fifth picks. Law adds that he does not expect Vandy righty Carson Fulmer to make it past the White Sox with the eighth pick.
  • Speaking of Fulmer, Kiley McDaniel of Fangraphs suggests that he represents a relatively rare “Black Swan” option in this year’s draft. You’ll need to read the piece to understand the concept, but McDaniel uses that classification for a subset of players that have been somewhat underappreciated by traditional player assessment tools: “small, right-handed, major-college starting pitchers with little to no injury history and a good performance record.”
  • The antithesis of the Black Swan pitcher, perhaps, is the high school power arm, and the Marlins took an enticing one last year in Tyler Kolek. Josh Norris of Baseball America checks in on the 2014 second overall selection, who the club chose over Carlos Rodon. Now featuring an increasingly promising curve, the 19-year-old is said to be showing signs of developing into the top-of-the-rotation starter that Miami dreamed of when it chose him. Of course, his stat line has yet to reflect that promise, and he has a long way to go.
  • The White Sox join a growing list of clubs with “serious interest” in Cuban outfielder Eddy Julio Martinez, MLB.com’s Jesse Sanchez tweets. The 20-year-old is free to sign at any time, though it’s possible he could wait until the next July 2 period kicks off this summer.
  • Agent Joshua Kusnick discussed the draft from an advisor’s perspective in a podcast with Ryan Sullivan (draft talk begins around the 24:00 mark), sharing his thoughts on the slotting system and the possibility of a worldwide draft, among other issues.

Hector Olivera Discusses Signing With Dodgers

Hector Olivera is Los Angeles’ newest star, but he easily could have wound up elsewhere given the widespread interest clubs had in him.  On a conference call Tuesday evening, I asked the infielder how many teams he had serious conversations with and whether he was close to signing with any of them.

There were five teams that had interest in me [including] San Francisco, Atlanta, and Miami,” Olivera said through a translator.  “But, in the end, I decided to sign with the Dodgers because I know that this is a great organization.”

Hours ago, team president Andrew Friedman told reporters that he is open to different positions for Olivera, who is said to have the ability to play second base, third base, and the corner outfield.  It appears that Olivera and Friedman are in agreement.

My whole career I played second base, but I don’t think I’m in the position to decide where I should play or to say what my preference is,” said the Cuban star when asked what position he is most comfortable playing. “Wherever they put me, I’m going to give my best…Wherever they put me, they’ll see results.”

Friedman was unwilling to put a timetable on Olivera’s Major League debut, but the player doesn’t think it’ll take all that long.  The second baseman told reporters that he’ll probably need “three or four weeks” to get ready before making the leap to L.A.  As he prepares to make the biggest transition of his professional career, he’ll do so unencumbered by any elbow trouble.  For weeks, it has been reported that Olivera was dealing with an issue in his arm, rumored to be a a slight UCL tear in his right elbow.

I don’t know where that rumor came from.  I know that there was a little bit of inflammation in my forearm…It was just fatigue in the muscle, but it wasn’t a serious problem and I don’t know where that rumor started.”



NL East Notes: Gosselin, Kendrick, Billingsley, Lagares, Redmond

Braves infielder Phil Gosselin will miss about eight weeks with a thumb fracture, the team announced. Gosselin will require surgery. Taking his place on the active roster is fellow infielder Adonis Garcia, a 30-year-old who had a rather quiet minor league career before posting strong results at Triple-A over the last two seasons. After logging 368 plate appearances with a .319/.353/.474 slash last year in the Yankees organization, the infielder/outfielder has slashed .351/.380/.455 thus far at Gwinnett. Garcia signed with New York out of Cuba back in 2012, ultimately settling for a minor league deal when early rumors of a $16MM to $18MM bonus never panned out.

Here’s more from the NL East:

  • Righty Kyle Kendrick discussed his departure from the Phillies, telling Ryan Lawrence of the Philadelphia Daily News that the end did not come without some perceived irony. “Ruben [Amaro Jr.] called me about a week after the season and said we’re going to go in a different direction, we’re going to go younger,” Kendrick said, “and then he signs Aaron Harang and Jerome Williams. So I was like, [huh]. That’s the way it is. Honestly I think it’s just part of the game and [they] wanted some different faces. That’s the way it goes.”
  • Meanwhile, the Phillies are struggling with pitching health, as the club announced that righty Chad Billingsley is headed to the 15-day DL with a right shoulder strain. The talented but oft-injured thirty year old had made his first starts since early in 2013. He has permitted 12 earned runs over 16 total frames, striking out seven and walking three, though the good news is that his fastball velocity is sitting right at career norms. While the setback is discouraging, Philly will certainly hope that Billingsley can return in relatively short order and provide innings — if not also a trade piece.
  • ESPN.com’s Jerry Crasnick profiles the recently-extended Mets center fielder Juan Lagares, explaining that Lagares has undergone a rather interesting breakout on the defensive side of the ledger after receiving some middling scouting grades in center in the minors. It is now broadly recognized, of course, that his glove is what gives Lagares such unique value. You’ll want to give the piece a read to learn about the 26-year-old’s journey.
  • Deposed Marlins manager Mike Redmond will still take home a fairly significant amount of guaranteed money from his former team, Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com tweets. In addition to the remainder of this year’s $850K salary, says Heyman, the Fish owe Redmond just over $1MM annually over the next two seasons.

Reactions To Marlins’ Hiring Of Dan Jennings

The Marlins’ decision to fire manager Mike Redmond was, perhaps, not terribly surprising at this point given the team’s high expectations and lackadaisical start. But the club shocked many around the game by shifting GM Dan Jennings into the dugout to take his place. President of baseball operations Michael Hill said before the announcement that the club was looking for a “new voice” to help trigger a turnaround, and it turns out that his front office partner will attempt to do just that.

Here are some reactions from around the game:

  • It does not appear that the decision to turn to Jennings was made at the spur of the moment, as Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports that the club had discussed the possibility earlier in the year. Regardless, says Rosenthal, it is an “outrageous” decision that constitutes an “insult” to other qualified potential candidates. The veteran reporter’s strong words were based, in large part, on the club’s apparent decision not to interview any minority candidates.
  • Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria discussed the situation, including the so-called Selig Rule on consideration of minority candidates, with Jon Morosi of FOX Sports. (Twitter links: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6.) On that topic, Loria said that he had contacted commissioner Rob Manfred to explain that the situation required an immediate change, without a full hiring process. He also noted to Morosi that the organization had made numerous recent managerial hires of minorities, and would comply with the rule in full if another search occurs after the season.
  • Of course, it is far from a given that Jennings will step down after the year; as Loria noted, there is no interim tag on his new title. The controversial owner told Morosi that he is looking for “structure, accountability and energy” from the new skipper. He also rejected the notion that the hiring was a major surprise, saying: “I’m not a maverick.” Loria pointed to other recent hires of managers who did not have professional experience in such a role.
  • In earlier comments to USA Today’s Bob Nightengale, Loria did indicate that the club’s structure will be revisited after the season. “Dan still is going to be very much involved in trades and things,” he said. “We’ll internally figure out what will happen at the end of the year, but our hope is that it stays like it. The only difference is that our GM is now the manager. We just dropped the general.” Loria also said that he played a role in the process but did not personally dictate the move from Redmond to Jennings. But he left no doubt about how he felt regarding the team’s performance, using interesting language to drive home the point: “We’re supposed to be the Fish. The Marlins. We shouldn’t be the Flounders. A Marlin isn’t a flounder. We’ve got to get it going.”
  • There are plenty of questions about the hiring of Jennings, says Andy Martino of the New York Daily News, but he advocates maintaining an open mind. As he rightly notes, the game has already evolved greatly in how it allocates authority between the front office and field staff. Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com explains, meanwhile, that Loria’s penchant for change makes a lengthy tenure for Jennings unlikely.
  • For Buster Olney of ESPN.com (Insider link), this is a boom-or-bust move. Among other challenges, Jennings will take on the day-to-day spokesperson role occupied by the modern manager — a stressful undertaking — and could face added difficulties in gaining trust within the clubhouse. Pulling no punches, Olney’s colleague Jerry Crasnick argues that the move is ill-conceived, predicting a rough transition and wondering whether things will end well.
  • From my perspective, it seems that the last point from Olney, regarding the organization’s relationships with its players, could be precisely where the Marlins are focused with this gambit. Jennings is, as all of the above articles reference, an affable and universally respected figure around the game. But there will be no question amongst the team’s players that the front office is present at all times; to a greater or lesser extent, after all, each man on the roster owes his job to Jennings, and Loria acknowledges that the former GM will continue to have heavy input in higher-level decisionmaking. That does indeed seem to offer some prospect of significant tension; on the other hand, it very likely brings added urgency to players’ day-to-day efforts. The notion of a player needing to step up in a contract year is commonly cited as a motivating factor. Now, the Marlins stand to find out whether a similar (but perhaps more invasive) kind of pressure can help to drive performance.

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Minor Moves: Nick Masset, Astros, Omar Duran

Here are the day’s minor moves from around the league…

  • The Marlins announced that they’ve outrighted Nick Masset to Triple-A New Orleans. The 33-year-old right-hander was designated for assignment over the weekend in order to clear a spot on the roster for Henderson Alvarez‘s activation from the 15-day disabled list. Masset has actually delivered strong results in 9 2/3 innings for the Marlins — a 1.86 ERA with six strikeouts against one walk. However, he’s also seen his fastball velocity drop by more than a mile per hour this season, as it’s now averaging 91.5 mph. Still, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see Masset eventually earn another crack at the Marlins’ big league roster, assuming he accepts the outright assignment.
  • The Astros have placed right-hander Sam Deduno on the 15-day DL and transferred Jed Lowrie to the 60-day DL in order to clear space for right-hander Lance McCullers, Jr. on both the 25-man and 40-man rosters, the club announced. McCullers’ contact has officially been selected from Triple-A, and he will start tonight’s game against the A’s. Houston selected McCullers with the 41st pick in the 2012 draft — 40 picks after they picked Carlos Correa with the No. 1 overall selection.
  • Left-hander Omar Duran signed a minor league deal to return to the Athletics organization, according to the MLB.com transactions page. Duran spent his entire career in Oakland’s minor league ranks prior to the 2015 season but signed with Detroit this past winter. After being released, Duran signed on and was assigned to Class-A Advanced Stockton, where he made his debut last night. The 25-year-old has a career 3.28 ERA with 12.1 K/9 and 5.7 BB/9 through 288 minor league innings, but he’s thrown just 22 2/3 innings at Double-A and has not advanced beyond that level.

Marlins Name GM Dan Jennings Manager

After the decision to fire manager Mike Redmond last night, the Marlins have officially announced that general manager Dan Jennings will succeed Redmond as the team’s new manager. Advance scout and former Mariners first base coach/bench coach Mike Goff will be the club’s new bench coach, while VP/assistant GM Mike Berger will assume Jennings’ former front office roles.

The decision was announced at an 11am ET press conference today in which Jennings, president of baseball operation Michael Hill and team president David Samson addressed the media. Owner Jeffrey Loria was not present for the press conference. Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald has a plethora of quotes from Jennings, Hill and Samson alike.

According to Hill, Jennings “is our manager for the remainder of the season. As we do with everything, we re-evaluate at the end of the season.” For the time being, the GM role with the Marlins will be considered vacant, but Jennings could return to that position at season’s end, Jon Heyman of CBS Sports tweets. Hill will head the baseball operations department, Jackson notes, and Samson acknowledged at the presser that Jennings is actually under contract through the 2018 season. Previously, Jennings was only known to be under contract through the 2015 campaign.

Samson said that the idea of Jennings taking the managerial reins was first generated on a conference call and then presented to Loria, who was amenable to the idea. Said Jennings of the hire, “It’s an honor and a privilege to be able to lead this team that I had a hand in putting together.” Jennings was, however, quick to recognize that he would need some help from someone with more experience. “I said the only way I would consider it is if Mike Goff was removed from advanced scouting position and moved to bench coach,” said Jennings. Goff has also served as a manager in the minor league systems of the Reds and Giants.

There’s little precedent for such a move, although the Brewers just made at least a somewhat similar move by shifting Craig Counsell from special assistant to GM Doug Melvin to the role of manager. The D-Backs took a comparable course in 2009 when the moved A.J. Hinch from the front office — he was the team’s director of player development — to the managerial role after dismissing Bob Melvin. Going further back, in 1989 the Indians named John Hart manager for a brief 19-game stretch to close out the season before transitioning him to president of baseball operations the following year.

The move to hire Jennings continues a recent trend of managerial hires despite zero prior experience, but those hires have all been of former players. In addition to Counsell, the Rays’ Kevin Cash, the Twins’ Paul Molitor, the White Sox’ Robin Ventura, the Tigers’ Brad Ausmus and the Cardinals’ Mike Matheny are just a few examples of current managers whose first experience in the role is coming at the big league level. Those managers, however, had at least spent significant time in the dugout as players and, in many cases, as coaches of varying capacity as well.

Jennings has no dugout experience, so while he is a respected baseball mind throughout the industry, he’s certainly stepping into uncharted territory here. FOX Sports’ Ken Rosenthal speculates that Jennings is taking the job at least somewhat out of a sense of obligation. Loria trusts Jennings a great deal and gave him an eight-year contract with the club’s front office following the 2007 season, Rosenthal notes, creating a strong sense of loyalty to Loria in Jennings.

The Marlins are currently still paying Jennings’ GM predecessor, Larry Beinfest, and they’ll also pay Redmond through the 2017 season and pay former manager Ozzie Guillen through the end of the current season. As such, the move from GM to manager for Jennings will prevent the team from taking on a financial commitment to a third manager, though it’s not directly clear how large a role that factor played in the decision.

Jon Heyman of CBS Sports first reported the decision (Twitter link) after suggesting it as a possibility on Sunday evening. USA Today’s Bob Nightengale first reported that Goff would be the bench coach and Berger would assume Jennings’ previous front office roles (Twitter links).


GM Dan Jennings Could Become Marlins Manager

Current Marlins GM Dan Jennings could become their next manager, CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman tweets. Heyman further notes that Ivan Rodriguez does not currently appear to be a candidate.

Heyman previously reported that the Marlins’ managerial choice would be “outside the box,” and Jennings would be an outside-the-box choice indeed. He coached high school baseball in Alabama before becoming a scout in the 1980s. He has since worked in a variety of scouting and front office roles and does not seem to have coached since then, having joined the Marlins front office in 2002.

There would be limited recent precedent for a team hiring its own GM as manager, particularly when that GM does not have experience in that role. (It is unclear whether Jennings would continue to serve as the Marlins’ GM if he were made manager, a possibility Heyman mentions; there would be similarly little recent precedent for such an arrangement.) One could also note an irony in Jennings replacing Mike Redmond as manager, given that Jennings himself bears responsibility for some of the player personnel moves that have led to the Marlins’ disappointing start this season, such as his trade for Mat Latos and signing of Michael Morse.

Jennings does, however, seem to have the ear of Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria, who promoted Jennings when he fired president of baseball operations Larry Beinfest late in the 2013 season. Jennings’ hire as manager would also be consistent with Joe Frisaro of MLB.com’s recent tweet indicating that the Marlins’ new manager would be a surprising hire from within the organization.


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Ivan Rodriguez A Rumored Candidate For Marlins Job

12:13am: Rodriguez does not seem to be a candidate, CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman tweets.

12:11am: There are industry whispers about former star catcher Ivan Rodriguez as a potential candidate for the Marlins managerial job, MLB.com’s Joe Frisaro tweets. The Marlins, of course, fired another former catcher, Mike Redmond, from the job on Sunday and will announce a replacement Monday morning.

The idea of Rodriguez as a candidate is consistent with Jon Heyman of CBS Sports’ recent tweet that the job will go to an “outside the box” candidate. Rodriguez retired in 2012 and is now a special assistant to Rangers GM Jon Daniels. He has no managerial experience, although former catchers like Mike Matheny and Brad Ausmus have won managerial jobs in recent seasons despite similarly thin resumés as coaches.

Rodriguez was widely credited for his veteran leadership for the Marlins in 2003, when they won their second World Series, although that was his only season with the team. He spent the rest of his 21-year big-league career with the Rangers, Tigers, Yankees, Astros and Nationals, generally putting up strong offensive numbers while winning ample praise for his work behind the plate (and particularly his arm). He holds the MLB record for games caught, with 2,427.


Quick Hits: Marlins, Montreal, Moncada, Hamilton

Thanks in part to revenue sharing, the Marlins remain profitable, and Jeffrey Loria’s fellow owners might take issue with his indecisive and costly approach to building a team, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports writes. The Marlins are now paying two former managers who are still under contract (Mike Redmond and Ozzie Guillen), plus former executives Larry Beinfest and Jim Fleming. They’re also paying former catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia through next season. Meanwhile, their attendance remains poor despite the recent opening of Marlins Park. Here’s more from throughout the game.

  • Redmond’s firing demonstrates the Marlins’ inability to follow a steady course, Tim Brown of Yahoo! Sports writes. The manager the Marlins hire tomorrow will be their eighth in the last decade, the others being Jack McKeon, Joe Girardi, Fredi Gonzalez, Edwin Rodriguez, McKeon again, Guillen and Redmond.
  • Montreal mayor Denis Coderre will meet with MLB commissioner Rob Manfred on May 28, and he plans to convey to Manfred the city’s love for baseball, the Associated Press reports. Montreal, of course, hasn’t had a team since the Expos were moved to Washington following the 2004 season. Coderre would like for big-league baseball to return, but it sounds like he expects it will be awhile before that can happen. “I don’t want to negotiate openly, but we’ll clearly talk about Montreal,” he says. “We need a step-by-step approach. You don’t pull the flower to make it grow faster.”
  • The Greenville Drive, the Red Sox‘ Class A affiliate, have announced that Yoan Moncada will make his professional debut Monday night, playing second base. The 19-year-old Cuban phenom had been in extended spring training. Red Sox fans will surely be paying close attention to tomorrow’s box score, hoping for hints as to what to expect from Moncada, who officially signed for a $31.5MM bonus in mid-March.
  • Josh Hamilton hasn’t yet joined the Rangers, but he’s happy to be back in the Dallas area on a rehab assignment with Double-A Frisco, Ryan Gerbosi of the Dallas Morning News writes. “It’s been a good reception,” says Hamilton. “It’s been good to hear a little twang in people’s voices and just go out there and it’s just a good feeling.” Hamilton, who has also played a handful of games for Triple-A Round Rock, doubled today in his second game with the RoughRiders and appears close to a return from his shoulder injury.
  • 19-year-old lefty Cionel Perez has left Cuba in search of a deal with a big-league team, but MLB’s registration rules will be an obstacle, Ben Badler of Baseball America writes. (Perez’s departure from Cuba was originally reported by MLB.com’s Jesse Sanchez.) Badler notes that Perez isn’t a top-tier prospect, but he has improved his standing lately and had become one of the better pitchers in Cuba before his departure. (Badler notes in a subscriber-only scouting report that Perez is small, at 5-foot-10, but has added velocity lately and is now throwing in the low 90s.) Because Perez was born after September 1, 1995, though, and has not yet registered with the commissioner’s office, he will not be eligible to sign until the international signing period that begins next July. Once he’s eligible, he will be subject to rules regarding international bonus pools.