MLB

Cubs sign Cuban OF Soler to 9-year, $30M deal

Share This Story

   
 

CHICAGO (AP)

Jorge Soler has officially joined the Chicago Cubs, signing a nine-year, $30 million deal that could make the 20-year-old Cuban outfielder a major piece of the team's future as it rebuilds under team president Theo Epstein.

''We think he provides a ton of potential power for us,'' general manager Jed Hoyer said Saturday in announcing the deal. ''We scouted him heavily. It's obviously a significant commitment for us but we feel like he fits in very well with what we're trying to do. He's the right age, the right talent and we're excited to finally get him started here.''

The 6-foot-3, 205-pound Soler will start out in right field and will initially report to the team's minor league facility in Mesa, Ariz., to work out and get ready for games. Hoyer couldn't project how long it might take Soler to be ready for the majors.

''Let's get him into games first. But he's 20 years old and we're really impressed with the looks we've got in games. One thing his agents did a very good job of, they put him in a lot of games down in the Dominican,'' Hoyer said. ''They let him play in a lot of games and he performed so we're hopeful that's a harbinger of good things, but it's hard to tell until he gets into games.''

Soler batted .304 in seven games during the 2010 World Junior Championships, helping Cuba to a bronze medal.

''He has huge power and it's hard to find power in today's game and that's a big part of why we're willing to make that kind of commitment is that it is hard to find power,'' Hoyer said. ''He's just a huge guy with bat speed and has always generated a lot of power.''

Earlier this year, the Cubs signed Cuban left-hander Geraldo Concepcion, who is now pitching in Class A. The Oakland Athletics made a big splash by signing another Cuban outfielder, Yoenis Cespedes, to a four-year, $36 million contract in February. And on Friday the Los Angeles Dodgers signed Cuban outfielder Yasiel Puig to a seven-year, $42 million deal.

Hoyer said the plan is to bring Soler along slowly.

''We're not going to try to speed him through the minors. There is no reason to do that. He's got to prove himself like anyone else in the system,'' he said.

''I think we have to do a really good job of focusing on his assimilation. For any player coming from Cuba this is a lot different and we have to understand that,'' Hoyer added. ''Professional baseball is hard for any player, let alone someone that is coming from a completely different culture.''

Soler gets a $6 million signing bonus, of which half is payable upon Major League Baseball's approval of the contract and the other half by Jan. 31.

Soler's salaries are $1 million for the first two years, $2 million for the following two years, $3 million for next two years and then $4 million for each of the final three seasons.

Related Stories

Member Comments

Please note by clicking on "Post comment" you acknowledge that you have read the Terms of Use and the comment you are posting is in compliance with such terms. Be Polite. Inappropriate posts may be removed by the moderator.

powered by



MLB Videos

Bautista talks Derek Jeter's final All-Star Game Posted: Jul 16, 2014
Jose Bautista discusses Derek Jeter's career and his final appearance in the MLB...

Jeter honored to play in last All-Star Game Posted: Jul 16, 2014
Derek Jeter compares his first All-Star Game experience with his last, Mike Trou...

Matheny defends Wainwright: He's out there to compete Posted: Jul 16, 2014
Mike Matheny comments on the media's reaction to Adam Wainwright's joke about le...

SimLeague Baseball - Simulation Baseball Game

More Than Sports on MSN

Fox Sports Store

    itemName itemURL imageSrc price itemDescription
    Nike New York Yankees Practice T-Shirt - Ash http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_New_York_Yankees/browse/featuredproduct/606363/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_606000/ff_606363_xl.jpg&w=100 27.95 Nike New York Yankees Practice T-Shirt - Ash
    Majestic Detroit Tigers 2012 MLB American League Champions Clubhouse Locker Room T-Shirt - Navy Blue http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Detroit_Tigers/browse/featuredproduct/1064043/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1064000/ff_1064043_xl.jpg&w=100 24.95 Majestic Detroit Tigers 2012 MLB American League Champions Clubhouse Locker Room..
    Majestic San Francisco Giants 2012 MLB World Series Champions Clubhouse Locker Room T-Shirt - Gray http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_San_Francisco_Giants/browse/featuredproduct/1067359/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1067000/ff_1067359_xl.jpg&w=100 24.95 Majestic San Francisco Giants 2012 MLB World Series Champions Clubhouse Locker R..
    Majestic San Francisco Giants 2012 MLB World Series Champions Clubhouse Locker Room Pullover Hoodie - Steel http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_San_Francisco_Giants/browse/featuredproduct/1067382/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1067000/ff_1067382_xl.jpg&w=100 54.95 Majestic San Francisco Giants 2012 MLB World Series Champions Clubhouse Locker R..
    New Era San Francisco Giants 2012 MLB World Series Champions Clubhouse Locker Room 39THIRTY Flex Hat - Charcoal/Black http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_San_Francisco_Giants/browse/featuredproduct/1067785/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1067000/ff_1067785_xl.jpg&w=100 31.95 New Era San Francisco Giants 2012 MLB World Series Champions Clubhouse Locker Ro..
    Majestic San Francisco Giants 2012 MLB World Series Champions Glory T-Shirt - Black http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_San_Francisco_Giants/browse/featuredproduct/1068294/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1068000/ff_1068294_xl.jpg&w=100 21.95 Majestic San Francisco Giants 2012 MLB World Series Champions Glory T-Shirt - Bl..
    Majestic San Francisco Giants 2012 MLB World Series Champions Batting Practice Performance Jersey - Black/Orange http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_San_Francisco_Giants/browse/featuredproduct/1068787/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1068000/ff_1068787_xl.jpg&w=100 94.95 Majestic San Francisco Giants 2012 MLB World Series Champions Batting Practice P..