Great job by the Reds to sign this kid when no one else knew he was eligible. Although I'm sure FCB has already soured on this signing since he has a sore elbow.
So since he is going to be assigned to Billings, but not play, do they have to play 1 guy short?
The Rally Onion wants 150 fans before Opening Day.
Try Albert PujolsDoubt it. I don't remember the Cardinals ever signing any big time Latin talents. This is Wayne Krivsky, not Walt
-LTlabnerIf you can't build a winning team with that core a fire-sale isn't the solution. Selling the franchise, moving them to Nashville and converting GABP into a used car lot is.
People like this signing, and I think it's fine. But it's wrong to assume it realistically matters. These types of young latin players fail a lot. They are signed at 16-17 and it could be 5-6 years before it makes a difference. It's good to hope they pan out, but the chance is very slim. The importance of this signing is basically that is signifies the Reds are putting more money in latin countries looking for that Vlad type star player. As far as this specific player, the height is a concern for me. The growth spurt may create holes in his swing and change his mechanics. The elbow also worries me, and he might grow out of a OF player. Obviously we know very little about him and it'll take 2 years before we have any substantial info when he plays a full season. Willy Mo was this type of 80 power, and it took him so many years to develop secondary skills and grow as a player that he left the organization before it paid off. (I know he had to be on the ML roster, and he did net a great return, but he still took a long time to develop and may never develop). It's just so hard to realistically think the actual player means something until we know how he performs. So much can happen, but it's worth the risk.
Great signing, I truly think this franchise is turning the corner.
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Undated interview with Jocketty
From 3/8/05:BW: Any plans on the Cardinals getting back into the Caribbean? I recall you cut back your presence there a few years ago.
WJ: You know what we did there? We basically shut it down because we just weren’t happy with the direction we were going. We decided that rather than throw good money after bad, we’d shut it down for the most part. Again, that’s something we’re re-evaluating and will determine what we’re going to do; but I think by the end of the year we’ll have something in place – some form of facility in the Latin American countries. But, we’re still trying to decide where to base the operations and how we’re going to do that. But, it’s something we are working on.
Cardinals to open Latin American academy
Organization to sponsor Dominican Summer League team
ST. LOUIS, March 8, 2005 -- St. Louis Cardinals Senior Vice President/General Manager Walt Jocketty and Vice President, Player Procurement Jeff Luhnow announced today the opening of a Cardinals baseball academy in the Dominican Republic. The academy will be located near Villa Mella, close to the international airport in Santo Domingo, yet away from the urban sprawl of the city. The organization plans to use the facility as a base for their international player development.
Construction of the facility and fields began last fall with an expected completion date of May of this year. Jose Mella, a renowned architect in the Dominican who has designed several award-winning buildings in the Dominican Republic, is the architect who designed the complex and is overseeing the construction. The academy will feature two baseball fields, living quarters for the players and staff, a deluxe clubhouse, exercise and training facilities, dining room, recreation areas and offices. The Cardinals will lease the facility from Mr. Mella.
"We are committed to scouting and player development in Latin America," said Luhnow. "The Cardinals have had operations in Latin America before, but never to this extent. This academy provides these young players the best chance of being ready when they come to the U.S."
The Cardinals plan on the facility being completed in time for the organization to field a team in the Dominican Summer League in 2005. In anticipation of the opening of the facility, the Cardinals international scouting department has signed players from various parts of Latin America, including Venezuela, Curacao, El Salvador, Colombia, Nicaragua and the Dominican Republic.
"There is so much talent in Latin America we felt this was a necessary step to compete for that talent," added Jocketty. "This academy will allow us to do things we haven't been able to in the past. This is a deal we've been working on since last summer and a lot of work had to be done to make sure we were ready to go for the 2005 season."
Wow. What an amazing signing by Wayne and the boys. From the sounds of it, this is like getting the #1 pick in the 2008 draft, maybe better. An 80 power potential on the 20-80 scale? Wow. Even more impressive is the 6'6" 195 at 16 years old. And here I thought that 16-year old pitcher the Reds signed back in January was big (Carlos Tineo - 6'5" 195). I applaud the Reds - this organization is going in the right direction.
When are we gonna be able to get him over here to play? This dude sounds like a monster.
I know the article said he can't play stateside until next year, but can we count on seeing him in the DSL this year?
Sounds to me like he's going to spend a summer in Sarasota practicing but not playing.
The lowest acceptable payroll amount for ownership to show they are not greedy pigs is 15 million more than they are currently paying. No matter what that currently is.
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