An International Free Agent Signing, And Some Unfinished 2014 Draft News

2014 Cubs sixth-round pick Dylan Cease pitches in the 2013 Under Armour All-America Game at Wrigley Field. Perhaps we'll see him doing this in a Cubs uniform in a few years - Reid Compton-USA TODAY Sports

Thursday is an off day for the major-league Cubs, and a good time to catch up on some unfinished business.

While none of these three items, on their own, seem entirely worthy of an article on their own, between the three, they seem worth a mention. I will start with the most concrete.

Kiley McDaniel is reporting the Cubs have signed Panamanian shortstop Francisco Garay. If that seems rather minimal as compared to last time around, or what the Yankees and Red Sox are doing this time around, it is. With the team in spending purgatory over last year's international free-agent spending spree, this year's IFA class will be far more modest. My guess is that one of the IFAs this time around will become relevant, eventually.

Which, when paired with talent that will likely be acquired for signing wedges, might turn out to be a decent haul anyway.

Second: those of you who read the second McDaniel tweet link below the link about Garay might have noticed the Cubs could be considering going "full out Yankee" for the 2015 signing class. With an international draft coming sooner than later, the international avenue is about to have the last few loopholes closed. With the Yankees and Red Sox, as well as a few others, out of the running, it might be worth a high-end gamble to burn through thirty million or so on one international class that makes last season's haul look rather tame.

I'd love to see it.

The final bit of information is that sixth-round draft choice Dylan Cease is likely to sign Thursday, if he hasn't already by the time you read this. In February, Cease was ranked behind Tyler Kolek, but ahead of the rest of the highly respected prep pitching class. The number that seems to be applicable is a $1.5 million bonus. A Vanderbilt recruit, he had arm miseries that will likely need Tommy John surgery. However, if he signs soon and gets the procedure done, he could pitch some in Boise next season, and be on his way through the system, not far behind his prep pitching brethren from his class.

And good Vandy pitchers rarely come cheap, anyway.

The only downside is that the bonus level will pretty much close off the rest of the signing class. However, with Kyle Schwarber doing what Kyle Schwarber does, adding one final high-end lottery ticket to the draft class is very nice icing on the cake.

More as circumstances dictate.

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