Monday, March 15, 2010
The Shortstop Search is Over
By Ian Hunter
Alex Anthopoulos' search for a shortstop could finally be over.
The New York post reported that the Blue Jays are close to signing Cuban defector Adeinis Hechavarria to a 4-year $10 million dollar contract.
Anthopoulos let it be known a few weeks ago that a shortstop was one of the coveted pieces he was searching for in rebuilding this team, and they would definitely have it by signing Hechavarria.
Just from watching the video above, it's evident that Hechavarria not only has great range as a shortstop, but incredible speed as well. Once again, the New York post suggests that Hechavarria's speed could translate as an outfielder.
The only stumbling block with that idea is Vernon Wells still has five years left on his contract, and certainly isn't planning on opting out of his contract after the 2011 season. Hechavarria skills would definitely bode well for him as a centre fielder, but at this point Alex Anthopoulos probably sees him much more valuable as a middle infielder.
Prior to the news of this possible signing, the Blue Jays 2007 first round pick in Justin Jackson was their next best bet when it came to a shortstop of the future. Jackson is still in Single A ball and has a long journey ahead before he makes it to the majors.
One could only imagine where Adeinis Hechavarria would begin the 2010 season, my guess is in Double A with the New Hampshire Fisher Cats.
What makes this news even sweeter is the fact that the New York Yankees and the Blue Jays were the final two teams bidding on Hechavarria. Any time a player chooses the Jays over the Yankees is a fantastic day.
One can't blame him for choosing the Jays though, because it seems like the Yankees are so reluctant to move on from Derek Jeter. The next shortstop in the Yankees organization waiting in the wings for Jeter to move on or retire could be waiting for a long time to supersede Jeter in the Yankees middle infield.