The Dodgers made their first 2013-14 off-season acquisition on Tuesday. They have signed a new second baseman in 26-year old, Cuban second baseman Alexander Guerrero.
Guerrero defected from Cuba earlier this year, and was reported to be close to a five-year deal with the Dodgers back in July. That deal fell through, and he joined with the powerful agent Scott Boras to construct the four-year $32 million contract that was agreed to on Tuesday.
In order to fit Guerrero onto the 40-man roster, Peter Moylan was designated for assignment. This also seems to put Mark Ellis out of a job, potentially. Ellis has a team option for 2014 worth $5.75 million, and if they choose not to pick that up, he will get paid a one million dollar buyout.
The signing has raised some eyebrows throughout baseball as the Dodgers committed so much to a player that they have seen so little from. Guerrero hass no history against MLB talent to judge off of, only a handful of workouts in front of scouts.
The situation is very similar to the Yasiel Puig signing from 2012. Puig was considered a huge gamble, but his first year as a Dodger ended up a raging success. Many analysts and MLB scouts originally felt they overpaid for the Cuban outfielder, but now that contract looks like a steal.
Whether or not Guerrero will be an MLB bust, or a superstar second baseman will have to be seen on the field in 2014, and beyond.
Overall, the move shows the Dodgers are completely committed to tracking down the best international talents they can find. With Korean Hyun-Jin Ryu, and Cubans Puig and Guerrero, the Dodgers have made three big deals in less than two years totaling $110 million.