Eloy Jimenez is a hell of a prospect and is expected to transition well to the major leagues. That said, he hasn’t played a single game in the big leagues. Despite that, the Chicago White Sox are reportedly set to lock him up to a long-term deal.
Honestly, this is a great deal. Jimenez is a 22-year-old five-tool prospect from the Dominican Republic who has dominated the minor leagues. He split time between Double-A and Triple-A in 2018 and hit .337, with 22 home runs, 75 RBIs, a .384 on-base percentage and a .961 OPS. He was arguably the best hitter in minor league baseball.
Baseball America has ranked him as the 17th-best prospect in baseball in 2017, the fourth-best in 2018 and the third-best before this season. His continues to jump up the ranks and will almost certainly be in the big leagues this year.
Locking him up for six years and $43 million and getting a pair of club options is brilliant. The deal could max out at eight years and $77 million. It’s a great deal for the White Sox to get a young star locked up long term. They are clearly confident he can do big things in the majors and now have him on board for a below-market deal.
After missing out of the big-name free agents this offseason, Chicago needed to do something positive. This is positive.