Cardinals Sign Aledmys Diaz
The Cardinals have signed Cuban infielder Aledmys Diaz, USA Today's Bob Nightengaletweets. Yahoo! Sports' Jeff Passan tweets that it's a four-year deal. Diaz will report to spring training tomorrow. Diaz is represented by Jaime Torres.
"We have been following Aledmys for quite some time," Cardinals GM John Mozeliak said in a statement. "His signing marks a significant benchmark for the Cardinals in the international arena, and we are excited to have reached this agreement."
Terms of the deal are unclear, but there has been some speculation that Diaz could receive a deal slightly larger than those signed by fellow Cuban infielders Erisbel Arruebarrena andAlexander Guerrero of the Dodgers. Scout.com's Kiley McDaniel suggests Diaz could get $5MM-7MM per season.
McDaniel also suggests Diaz should hit well for average, but with below-average power. He reportedly isn't a strong defensive shortstop, but he could be better at second base. Whether Diaz can play shortstop regularly may not be a huge issue for the Cardinals anyway, at least not in the short term, since they signed Jhonny Peralta to a four-year deal this offseason. The Cardinals currently have Kolten Wong penciled in as their starter at second base, with Matt Carpenter at third and Mark Ellis as a key infield backup.
Diaz worked out for the Cardinals last month and, per a tweet from MLB.com's Jesse Sanchez, the Cubs this past Wednesday. The 23-year-old had also been connected to the Giants, Blue Jays, Yankees, Phillies, Mariners, Braves and Athletics. Besides the Cardinals, Diaz had received offers from five other clubs, tweets Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports.