The Cubs have landed a five-tool player who has a chance to have plus tools across the board.
According to industry sources, the club has agreed to a deal with shortstop Cristian Hernandez, No. 6 on MLB Pipeline’s Top 30 International Prospects List, for $3 million.
The team has not confirmed the deal.
At 6-foot-2, 175 pounds, the 17-year-old resembles a young Alex Rodriguez and has a build similar to Manny Machado at the same age. Like Rodriguez and Machado, Hernandez could move to third base, but he will likely stay at his current position. At the plate, he shows an approach and the type of hitting abilities that will give him a chance to hit for a high batting average. He's also expected to have plus power in the future. On defense, he shows plus arm potential with smooth hands. He has displayed a knack for making plays in the hole and up the middle with equal proficiency. His agility and overall athleticism allow him to charge the ball and make plays with ease.
According to the rules established by the Collective Bargaining Agreement, clubs that receive a Competitive Balance Pick in Round B of the Draft have the most money to spend on international prospects, with a pool of $6,431,000. Clubs that receive a Competitive Balance Pick in Round A of the Draft receive the second most at $5,889,600.
The Cubs have a bonus pool of $5,348,100.
Unlike in previous years, teams are not allowed to trade any of their international pool money. Signing bonuses of $10,000 or less do not count toward a club's bonus pool, and foreign professional players who are at least 25 years of age and have played in a foreign league for at least six seasons are also exempt.