10:49pm: Zoellner cost the O’s a fairly hefty $750K in pool money, per Dan Connolly of The Athletic (Twitter link).
3:42pm: The Orioles have acquired minor league first baseman Jack Zoellner from the Phillies in exchange for international bonus pool space, according to an announcement from both clubs. Zoellner was the Phillies’ ninth-round selection in the 2017 draft.
It’s at least a somewhat surprising move for the Orioles, who have a long history of trading away international bonus allotments in exchange for marginal prospects but recently announced their intentions to invest more heavily in the international market. It’s not known how much they’re sending to the Phillies in this deal just yet, though the CBA stipulates that international allotments must be moved in at least $250K increments.
The Orioles entered the day with more international money to spend than any team in baseball, and there have been rumors that they’re planning to make a serious run at top Cuban outfielder Victor Victor Mesa once he’s formally declared a free agent. Today’s swap certainly doesn’t prevent them from doing so, though they’ll now have a bit less money to entice Mesa, who is also said to be a target of the Marlins (the team with the second-most international money remaining).
Zoellner, 24 next month, has yet to advance beyond Rookie ball in parts of two seasons with the Phillies organization. He was hitting .236/.364/.422 with seven homers, five doubles, two triples and nearly as many walks (32) as strikeouts (42) through 195 plate appearances this season. Those numbers have come in a league where the average player is more than three years younger than Zoellner, so presumably the Orioles will want to move him up the ladder sooner rather than later to begin to test him against more advanced competition.
Orioles general manager said in a statement to reporters that the organization believes Zoellner to be “a capable left-handed hitter with good on-base skills and power” (Twitter link via MASNsports.com’s Roch Kubatko).
Did the O’s put in a ton of effort to get INT money to make a run at Victor Victor Mesa? Just to trade the money to the Phillies for… a bad 23 year old 9th rounder in rookie ball?
Yeah. This seems odd for a team that said just before the trade deadline that they were going to do things differently including international signings…
dimitrios in la
Perhaps there’s some info coming in that they CAN’T sign VV.
Perhaps NOT. Perhaps DD just lied to us about the “new direction”. And just wanted to get rid of as many big contracts as he could.
The move is a slap in the face by an arrogant GM. What a waste of International FA money.
This really only bothers me because of the Gausman trade. We did not get the prospect value we should have and took 2.5mm in international money instead. Which at the time I wasn’t completely against if it meant we were looking to get Mesa. But this just makes no sense. A 24 year old in rookie ball who isn’t even really playing well in rookie ball. If we sign Mesa it’ll be a little better because we are still flush with international cash but I find it hard to believe we couldn’t have signed 4-5 18 year olds in the DR w as much upside.
Only because of the Gausman trade? You list about 5 other reasons it is a rediculous move. Maybe they did not want to wait to get him in the Rule 5 draft.
Yeah, the Gausman trade is the main reason though. It just doesn’t make sense. Unless they see something no one else sees on this guy. Idk how you get exited about a guy a 24 yo in rookie ball.
I was under the impression that they actually cared about their international bonus pool. We’ve all been bamboozled.
The honeymoon was short lived!
Angelos must have come back from the dead.
I didn’t believe anything that was said at the trade deadline with Angelos still at the helm. He has ruined the Orioles!
dimitrios in la
Not at all actually.
They’re the worst run team in baseball…
Yeah exactly JD, and if anyone disagrees, they are either a delusional Orioles fan, or they don’t know anything about baseball…
It’s one or the other, because if you know anything about baseball, you cannot help but be aware of how terribly this team has been ran..
Worst run but the Orioles have had good success.
Yea, I usually don’t associate the two things.
Actually, the Orioles have been awful since Angelos has been the owner.
Yanks only signed Alexander Vargas for $2.5MM cuz they knew they couldnt (outbid) O’s on #1 INT FA (Victor Mesa!!)
Speaking of Yankees… SP Zach rodgers was just called up. (For better or for worse, that means Zach Britton trade already bearing fruit) Keep your heads up O’s fans!
Looks like Stubborn Angelos (finally) look to rebuild from within (and that means spending on INT FA)
Victor Victor Mesa * ^
Are you talking about Josh Rogers or Zac pop?
Josh* Rodgers. Thank you 🙂
Hope trade works out well both sides. I’m excited to see what Rodgers can do. I’ll be rooting for him
Hopefully the Orioles are not bringing him up too early, like they tend to do, especially with pitchers..
24 successful starts in AAA this year. If he sucks it’s not the orioles fault for rushing him. He’s as ready as he’s going to be.
But he will be on the Oriole train back and forth to Norfolk. These kids don’t develop because they are used for a game then sent back. No continuity, no stability, no experience with the Majors. Just in and out.
We’ll see. Yefry got 9 starts. Don’t think he’s the answer. Hess is still rolling in the rotation. As far as the BP goes, they’ve been getting hit up so bad they need to be shuttled. Phillips and Carroll have gotten rocked. We might as well move Cashner to the bullpen and let Hess, Ramirez and Rogers air it out the rest of the year. Cashner might be half decent in a relief capacity too.
Does anyplace have a reasonable accurate listing of the top ten pool amounts left?
That would be a really cool feature.
They probably still have enough to sign Victor Victor. Might be short on signing his brother Victor Victor and his other brother Victor Victor. And their cousin Daryl.
Good. I want Daryl on my squad. Good…
Roger, Roger. What’s our vector, Victor?
That is not an impressive return for anything
Out of place Met fan
Just pure speculation, but Zoellner is what the Phillies we’re willing to give the Mets for Bautista. Mets turned it down, but will take the IFA money…
As for the Orioles, well old habits die hard
Seriously…? Looks like he’s gotten on track …..
Yes that means they can finally get out from under his deal.
Whoever went for this trade apparently doesnt understand rebuild. The only reason they went for it is because they are so far ahead on the bonus pool money that 250g won’t make a difference in getting Mesa. But then they could just spend it on a different international free agent.
They traded 750, not 250
Physical pending still?
Some things never change
I was expecting 250k, 750k seems like a steal for the Phillies
Ya that’s pretty heavy for a college guy still stuck in Rookie ball, where he should have never been in the first place. Dunno, was inspired by what the O’s were doing, even if they didn’t get any impact players back in all the deals. They DID improve the depth of the system, rather significantly.
But this one’s a head scratcher…..
They just can’t get out of their own way. They won’t sign Victor Victor or anyone else.
This is so Orioles. They could’ve signed 5 international kids who would hit .236 in rookie ball and hoped 1 would improve.
Zoellner cost the O’s a fairly hefty $750K in pool money
Not if you’re Angelos. Then, that’s $750K he doesn’t have to spend on young talent. And that’s before we take into account the cost of developing a 16 year old who shows up on your doorstep speaking only Spanish.
Who needs that kind of headache, when you can just deploy the patented “finish last for five years straight, and pick first in the draft every time” strategy, for developing your farm system.
Ouch… a 24-year-old in rookie ball is like a 12-year-old in kindergarten.
On the surface this looks like another terrible decision by the Orioles. Way too much to pay for the player they received back.
Phillies gonna send the int money to the Mets for Joey Bats