International Free Agency Thread 2018-2019

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Re: International Free Agency Thread 2018-2019

Postby Regular Show » Sun Jun 02, 2019 7:51 pm


In the mid-2000s, federal law enforcement agencies started taking intense interest in the smuggling of Cuban players. Under code names Operation Boys of Summer, Operation Safety Squeeze and Operation Sisyphus, agents with the FBI and Department of Homeland Security worked a series of investigations aimed, in part, at determining whether MLB team employees were doing business with human smugglers.

In interviews with The Post, two retired federal prosecutors who oversaw previous investigations accused MLB of ignoring obvious signs of the corruption they believe the league’s rules incite across Latin America. Under rules collectively bargained between the league and the MLB Players Association, a Cuban who defects to the United States has to enter the MLB draft, where salaries are suppressed, while a Cuban who defects elsewhere is declared a free agent and can sign with the highest bidder.

“MLB’s own rules and regulations . . . encourage the smuggler and fraudsters to go through the charade,” said Patrick Sullivan, a retired former assistant U.S. Attorney who oversaw the 2017 prosecution of Hernandez and trainer Julio Estrada.

In 2016, one of those investigations led to the indictments of Bart Hernandez, a Cuban native and sports agent based in Florida, and Julio Estrada, a trainer of Cuban players. Their trial introduced evidence showing the rampant fraud around Cubans entering the major leagues, and raised questions about whether team and league officials ignored obvious red flags noticed years later by federal agents...
In Mexico, according to courtroom testimony, Hernandez partnered with gangsters nicknamed “Nacho” and “Tony Montana.”

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So I guess Nacho does survive the events of BCS and becomes a human smuggler in Mexico in the future. Kinda sad...
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Re: International Free Agency Thread 2018-2019

Postby CaliforniaRaisin » Tue Jun 11, 2019 5:04 am

https://www.thecubreporter.com/06102019 ... -2-players

6/10 UPDATE:

The Cubs have officially signed another 2018-19 IFA:

Andricson Salvador, LHP
Age 18
DOMINICAN REPUBLIC
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Re: International Free Agency Thread 2018-2019

Postby CubsWin » Tue Jun 11, 2019 8:52 pm

CubsWin wrote:
CaliforniaRaisin wrote:BA did their Cubs review of their IFA signings: https://www.baseballamerica.com/stories ... cago-cubs/

The Cubs signed 29 players in calendar year 2018. Ben Badler highlighted the big names:

  • RHP Richard Gallardo - Was 89-93 when he signed but ticked up to 95 at Dominican instructional league. Had nice words for his 3rd pitch, the change.
  • OF Jose Lopez - Shows sound grasp of the strike zone. Still has the big hitch and arm bar but his quick hands and bat speed makes up for it now.
  • SS Rafael Morel - Good bat speed, fast-twitch player/good raw athlete (sounds like Chris...and apparently their dad was a former pro basketball player)
  • LHP Joel Machado - Topping out at 89
  • OF Yohendrick Pinango - Also a good eye for the strike zone with a patient approach
  • SS Pedro Martinez - Signed in last year's class for low 6-figures. Played in the DSL last year.
  • C Pablo Aliendo, Venezuela - Signed last May so class of 17-18 too. Played in the DSL last year.

That's the first I've heard Pablo Aliendo being mentioned as a "big name". Good to know...

It's a meaningless sample size, and there hasn't been much to write about from the minors lately so whatever, but that "big name" catcher, Pablo Aliendo, has started the year off well hitting .429/.600/.643. We'll see where he is towards the end of July.

The Cubs sure do like themselves a Venezuelan catcher. Of the 7 catchers they have in the DSL, 6 of them are from Venezuela (one of which is Aliendo). Jhonny Pereda, Gustavo Polanco and Henderson Perez are also from there along with Erick Castillo and minor league FA signing Francisco Arcia. With Willy's success, I can see why. Contreras makes 12 in total. But that number is about to go up. Recent signee Edgar Gamargo and rumored upcoming IFA signees Ronnier Quintero and Brayan Altuve are all Venezuelan catchers.

Hey, if it ain't broke...
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Re: International Free Agency Thread 2018-2019

Postby CaliforniaRaisin » Sun Jun 16, 2019 4:49 am

6/16 UPDATE:

With just minutes left before the midnight (Eastern) deadline, the Cubs signed two more 2018-19 J-2 IFA, bringing the total number of 2018-19 J-2 IFA signed by the Cubs to 39, including 21 since the Cubs acquired $750K in ISBP space from the Baltimore Orioles this past April in return for allowing the Orioles to keep 2017 Rule 5 draft pick RHRP Pedro Araujo.

Emir Blanco, P
NFI

Ricardo Green, P
NFI

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

6/14 UPDATE:

Jorge Arellano, P
NFI

Luis Barrelliza, OF
NFI

Starling Mateo, OF
NFI

++++++++++++++++++++++++

6/13 UPDATE:

Elias Fabian OF
NFI

Anderson Feliz, P
NFI

Wilfri Figuereo, P
NFI

Samuel Rodriguez, P
NFI

Joanfran Rojas, INF
R/R, 5'11 162, Age 17
VENEZUELA

Wilker Ruiz, P
NFI


https://www.thecubreporter.com/06162019 ... s#comments
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