Toronto signs international prospect Gurriel

The Blue Jays continued a very busy day for themselves on Friday by signing Cuban prospect Lourdes Gurriel to a 7-year/$22 million deal. Gurriel flashed his potential in Cuba this year as he hit .321 with 8 home runs before he defected from Cuba in February. He is a speedy 23-year old player that also has been very good defensively. Gurriel isn’t a dynamic offensive player yet, but he has good power potential and he still has room to improve offensively. Gurriel put up some good offensive numbers in Cuba, but it is still too soon to tell how those stats will translate to the MLB level. However, given the production that many cuban prospects have shown in the MLB then I don’t doubt that he can make a big impact at some point for the Blue Jays. It will be interesting to see if he becomes an outfielder or infielder, yet he’ll probably be sent to Double-A or Triple-A in order to make sure he is ready to face major league pitching. It all depends on how well he succeeds in the minor leagues, but Gurriel should be ready by 2018 or 2019 to be MLB ready. This is a very team-friendly contract by only committing about $3 million annually to a player who has shown the potential to be worth much more than that. If he turns out to be a good MLB contributor like many people expect then this is a great signing. However, this signing is low-risk since it won’t hurt the Blue Jays financially if for some reason he doesn’t produce at the MLB level. Time will tell how good this signing is, but considering the potential that he has then this is a really good signing for Toronto either way.

Grade: B+



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