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Cubs set to sign top international prospect Jimenez

Cubs set to sign top international prospect Jimenez

Cubs set to sign top international prospect Jimenez

It appears that Eloy Jimenez's dream of being the next Sammy Sosa and running around the outfield at Wrigley Field is one step closer to becoming a reality.

An industry source told MLB.com on Wednesday that the prospect has agreed to a $2.8 million bonus and a $250,000 college scholarship with Cubs, and is currently working out at the team's academy in the Dominican Republic.

top 30 international prospect signings
Signings of players on MLB.com's 2013 Top 30 International Prospects list.
No. Name Pos Country Signed Bonus
1 Eloy Jimenez OF DR CHC* $2.8m
2 Micker Zapata OF DR CWS $1.6m
3 Gleyber Torres SS VZ CHC* $1.7m
4 Marten Gasparini SS ITA KC* $1.3m
5 Leonardo Molina OF DR    
6 Rafael Devers 3B DR BOS* $1.5m
7 Jose Herrera C VZ ARI* $1.06m
8 Marcos Diplan RHP DR TEX* $1.3m
9 Mayky Perez RHP DR SD* $635k
10 Lewin Diaz OF DR MIN* $1.4m
11 Yeltsin Gudino SS VZ TOR $1.29m
12 Luis Encarnacion 3B DR    
13 Jose Almonte OF DR TEX* $1.8m
14 Erick Julio RHP COL COL* $700k
15 Carlos Herrera SS VZ COL* $1.2m
16 Anderson Franco 3B DR    
17 Erling Moreno RHP COL CHC* $650k
18 Yimmelvyn Alonzo SS DR    
19 Lucas Tirado SS DR LAD $1M
20 Greifer Andrade OF VZ SEA* $1.05m
21 Bryan Lizardo 3B DR    
22 Franly Mallen SS DR MIL $800k
23 Yeyson Yrizarry SS DR TEX* $1.35M
24 Emmanuel DeJesus LHP VZ BOS* $780k
25 Wladimir Galindo 3B VZ    
26 Carlos Hiciano SS DR OAK* $750k
27 Michael DeLeon SS DR TEX* $550k
28 Nicolas Pierre OF DR MIL $800k
29 Jen-He Tseng RHP TAI    
30 Wasner Pequero OF DR    
* Club has not confirmed signing

Jimenez will officially sign with the club soon, the source said, but a timetable has not been set. The team did not confirm the agreement.

The 6-foot-4, 198-pound Jimenez, who ranks No. 1 on MLB.com's Top 30 International Prospects list, is considered the crown jewel of the 2013-14 international signing period and has impressed scouts with his intelligence, plus-speed, and gap-to-gap power.

He's considered a five-tool player.

"It's my dream to be a Major League baseball player, but I don't want to just get there," Jimenez told MLB.com less than two weeks ago. "I want to be one of the best players in the game and to ever come from the Dominican Republic."

He might be on his way.

A star in MLB's RBI program in the Dominican Republic and for the International Prospect League (IPL), Jimenez is considered an advanced hitter with quick hands who should hit for average. He projects as a corner outfielder and is expected to improve on all aspects of his game once he becomes a regular in the academy.

Like many international teens his age, Jimenez could use more in-game experience, but scouts rave about his makeup.

Jimenez, who also does karate, started playing baseball at age 9, primarily in the infield until he moved to the outfield three years ago. At 14, he caught the eye of trainer/agent Amauris Nina during a youth league game and started training with him. Jimenez's signing will mark the culmination of almost two years of hard work, and countless tryouts and showcases in front of Major League teams.

The outfielder will join a talented group if he finalizes the agreement.

So far, sources have linked the Cubs to some of the top prospects on the market. On Tuesday, sources confirmed that the team agreed to a deal with shortstop Gleyber Torres, the top player from Venezuela and third-ranked international prospect, for $1.7 million, and Colombia's right-handed pitcher Erling Moreno, who ranked No. 17, for $650,000.

The club also signed right-handed pitcher Jefferson Mejia for $850,000 and added catching prospect Johan Matos for $270,000.

Between their deals with the Astros, Orioles and Dodgers, the Cubs added $963,000 in international slot money to up their total pool to $5.52 million to pay for these prospects.

Like every club, the Cubs are hopeful their investments on the international market will pay off.

"I feel like I've done a great job so far," Jimenez said. "I know there are going to be highs and lows, but I'm staying positive. I'm ready to be a professional."

Jesse Sanchez is a national reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @JesseSanchezMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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