Cuban shortstop Yolbert Sanchez will formally be eligible to sign with teams beginning tomorrow, and Joe Trezza of MLB.com looks at the Orioles’ chances of signing the soon-to-be 22-year-old. While Baltimore’s level of interest in Sanchez isn’t fully clear to this point, they still have to be considered the favorite to add Sanchez given that their near-$6MM international pool is more than four times larger than the next-largest pool: the Dodgers’ $1.4MM. Trezza spoke to one non-Orioles exec who likened Sanchez to a second- or third-round pick in terms of overall talent, given his limited offensive potential but quality glove and speed. Still, while he may not be an elite prospect, Sanchez looks like the best international talent on the board at the moment, and the O’s have the spending capacity to trounce any offer made during the current signing period. Sanchez could, alternatively, wait until July 2 to sign, which would open the field up considerably.
Elsewhere in the division…
- Right-hander Danny Farquhar discussed his remarkable comeback in an appearance on MLB Network Radio on SiriusXM (Twitter link, with audio). Farquhar, who recently inked a minor league contract with the Yankees, was fighting for his life 10 months ago after suffering a brain aneurysm in the White Sox’ dugout. Soon to turn 32, Farquhar acknowledged that he’s lucky to be alive but also put a positive spin on his harrowing medical status, noting that in the time since recovering, he’s been able to dedicate himself solely to training. While this time of year brings about frequent “best shape of his life” stories, Farquhar’s is certainly of more note than most others given a recent near-death experience. While the Yankees’ bullpen will be a tough one to crack, Farquhar can either head to Triple-A as a depth option if he doesn’t make the roster or, potentially, attract the interest of another team with a strong spring showing for the Yankees.
- Outfielder Tommy Pham’s arbitration hearing with the Rays is set to take place today, tweets MLB Network’s Jon Heyman. Pham logged a ridiculous .333/.448/.622 slash with seven homers, seven doubles and six triples in 174 plate appearances with Tampa Bay following last summer’s trade from the Cardinals organization. He’d struggled previously in St. Louis, though his combined .275/.367/.464 slash between the two teams was still quite strong. Pham filed for a $4.1MM salary, while the Rays countered at $3.5MM — as can be seen in MLBTR’s 2019 Arbitration Tracker.