Eloy Jimenez Officially Signs With the Cubs, Leonardo Molina With the Yanks

In Commentary And Analysis by myles19 Comments


Eloy Jimenez officially announced his signing with the Cubs today in a press conference in the Dominican Republic. The move has been long-rumored, but the Cubs asked him to wait until after the trade deadline to make it official.

  BA TAM Bonus
Gleyber Torres (ss) 2 2 $1,700,000
Erling Moreno (rhp) 16 48 $800,000
Jefferson Mejia (rhp) NR* 22 $650,000
Johan Matos (c) NR NR $270,000
Jen-Ho Tseng 23 12 $1,625,000
Eloy Jimenez (of) 1 1 $2,800,000
Totals     $7,845,000
*Baseball America didn't include any prospect in their top 30 who had previously been eligible to sign.

The Cubs haven't acquired any additional slot space since their July 2nd trades of Ronald Torreyes to the Houston Astros and Scott Feldman to the Orioles. In combination with their lavish spending, this means they will face the maximum penalties in next year's international signing period. They will be unable to sign any prospect for more than $250,000, and will pay 100% tax on their overage this year. This will cost them an extra $2.3 million, approximately.

Leonardo Molina Signs With the Yankees

The remaining question is whether the Cubs, resigned to the maximum penalty, will pursue any of the big names left on the market. Phil Rogers had been touting Leonardo Molina and Luis Encarnacion as their next targets, but today Molina turned sixteen, and signed with the Yankees for $1.4 million. For most, this isn't a surprise, as most of these deals are unofficially completed well in advance, and Ben Badler has been predicting Molina to the Yankees for months. Luis Encarnacion turns 16 next week, and Badler is still predicting that he will sign with the Phillies. I haven't heard any other buzz connecting the Cubs to additional IFAs, but if they do make a run at someone else, OV will have you covered.

Eloy Jimenez Scouting Report

Jimenez is a big corner-outfielder with power who enjoys Dominican sunsets and Sammy Sosa homers at Wrigley Field.


Several teams see Jimenez as a better version of Elier Hernandez. He has good baseball instincts, but his bat isn’t as advanced as Guzman’s or last year’s No. 1 prospect, Blue Jays Venezuelan shortstop Franklin Barreto. Some scouts have seen him hit in games, while others haven’t seen the game dominance that would merit the type of bonus he’s expected to command. His long arms create length to his swing and he will need to keep his hips from flying open too early, but he has good hand-eye coordination and uses the middle of the field. Jimenez has average raw power and a flat swing that results in hard line drives rather than loft power. With his size and strength potential, he could grow into above-average power. Some scouts think he has the ingredients to hit, so it may be a matter of making subtle adjustments.

Jimenez is athletic for his size and in January ran the 60-yard dash in 6.72 seconds, which is above-average speed. Others have said his speed plays closer to average and because of his frame and unusual gait, he will continue to slow down as he fills out, so he’s a corner outfielder all the way. With a slightly above-average arm, he should be able to play right field. 


Considered by many to be the top prospect available for the 2013 IFA class, Jimenez is a physical specimen with a major league ready body. Despite his massive frame, Jimenez is noted to have above-average speed running a 6.72 in the 60-yard dash at the recent MLB International Prospect Showcase. Possessing similar tools to Royals 2011 signing Elier Hernandez (also trained by Nina), Jimenez has a quick bat, but his swing can get long at times leading to contact issues. Given his current size at age 16, it's quite foreseeable that Jimenez will slow down some as he fills out, but his plus-plus raw power from the right side and above-average arm strength should profile just fine in an outfield corner. Jimenez regsitered a hit, two walks, and two stolen bases in three at-bats in the MLB Amateur Prospect League.


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  1. Author

    Nice post.

    I want to say that Lake’s HR came off the bat harder than maybe any HR I’ve seen this year, Rizzo’s first week HR excepted.

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  2. uncle dave

    @ Myles:
    I’m not sure how many hitters make their living hitting pitchers’ pitches. Lake could have an interesting career if he finds a way to keep getting them to throw pitches he can hit.

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  3. Not Stationary WaLi

    @ GW:
    Cool. Hopefully some other names come up and the Cubs just sign everyone. I’d gladly sign a Concepcion if there’s a Soler in the bunch

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  4. rice in limbo

    Would they sign more though? I actually thought they’d sign the Molina kid when he turned 16. Every kid from this point on will cost double, so a kid that gets a $1MM bonus actually costs the org $2MM and this doesn’t include the kids under $10k or whatever the bulk discount rate was. I’m cool with signing all the players but from a business point of view…that’s real money.

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  5. GW

    At this point I don’t think there is anyone available who they would want that would cost much over $200k. Among BA’s top 30, Devers (3) is signing with the Red Sox, Encarnacion (4) likely with the Phils, Franco (29) likely with the Nats.

    If it turns out that Aledmis Diaz actually turns 22 this month instead of 23 or some other u-23 Cuban defects and happens to get processed very quickly by the government, then I think we will see it. Otherwise, I don’t think it will happen.

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  6. GW

    additional unsigned from mayo’s top 30 (as far as I can tell):

    yimmelvyn alonzo, ss (#18)
    wladimir galindo, ss (#25)
    wasner peguero, of/p (#30)

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