The San Diego Padres are at it again. Just as the fan base begins to complain and wonder what the Padres are doing, the team again acquires one of the best young talents on the international market. After already signing Adrian Morejon, Luis Almanzar, Gabriel Arias, Jeisson Rosario and Tirso Ornelas among others this month, the team has now signed Cuban outfielder Jorge Ona to a $7 million dollar deal.
Cuba is stocked with talent and the Padres are finally starting to develop some young players of their own. Ona is described by Ben Badler as a prototypical right fielder with a strong-arm, athleticism, and power in his bat. The right handed hitter has great size for being a 19-year-old and at 6′ 2″ and 192 lbs, he looks to have a very bright future in the game of baseball. He has a polished approach at the plate and could move quickly through the system.
— Jesse Sanchez (@JesseSanchezMLB) July 19, 2016
The Padres are not messing around when it comes to replenishing this farm system. There was a report from Keith Law that the Padres farm system has shot all the way up to the #2 system in all of baseball. That is really amazing and all the Preller critics need to wake up! The only issue is the talent is all loaded in the 16-20 years of age range so it will take a little while before we see a huge return on all these prospects. Still it’s not like Hunter Renfroe, Manuel Margot, Carlos Asuaje and Austin Hedges are horrible prospects. Each is nearly major league ready so the return may not be as far away as some people think.
A.J. Preller is the man, I cannot say this enough. The Padres farm system is loaded with young talent and the team will surely be a contender very soon. Not only will the team contend, but they should be dominating with their young arms. This is a very exciting time to be a Padres fan. You all should really know this.
Cuban outfield prospect Jorge Ona has been cleared as a free agent, and the Padres are expected to sign him. https://t.co/VqTTTEi6XE
— Dennis Lin (@sdutdennislin) July 19, 2016
Ona is a stud outfielder. In the COPABE 18u Pan American Championships in Mexico, Ona destroyed the competition. He went 14-22 (.636) in the tournament with four homers in eight games resulting in a 1.364 slugging percentage. He has a short quick right handed stroke with power. He is athletic and can field. He is a five tool talent in other words. He will immediately be a top-30 prospect in the Padres system if they do manage to sign him.
The deal will essentially cost the Padres $14 million dollars. They have already exceeded their limit in this international signing period and with that they will have to pay a 100% tax on signing Ona. That means what ever they pay him will be doubled. Also with his signing they put themselves in danger of being restricted to sign any other international players for another two seasons for more than $300 thousand dollars. Something that the Yankees, Cubs and Red Sox are now suffering from and one of the main reasons the Padres were able to scoop up all this talent. Preller is certainly paying attention to what he is doing and there is a definite strategy. The addition of Ona is big. Preller is doing rock star things again.