The thrice owned Philapelphia Citi Quakers under previous owner mitchrapp broke the bank in signing P Emmanuel Ferrer to a major league contract with a record bonus of $21 million. Ferrer looks to be a top line starter down the line, as long as he stays healthy. With 4 above average pitches, Ferrer should be able to keep hitters off balance as he moves up the ladder. Currently in LowA, look for new ownership in Philly to show a little patience as Ferrer gets better with age.
The Cleveland Rockstars signed C Al Belliard to a major league deal, with a $4mil bonus thrown in. While not the greatest defensively, Belliard should be solid with a bat in his hands, and might end up spending plenty of time in the majors as a DH.
Also signed to a major league contract was P Russ Cox by the New York Empires. Figuring that you can't call yourself an Empire without have a top notch pitching prospect, the Empires blew away the competition by offering Cox a major league deal and a $20 million bonus. While not quite in Ferrer's class in terms of dominating pitches, Cox is more well rounded in other ways, and should be a top of the rotation guy in New York.
The last remaining International signed to a major league deal as of this writing is LF Ivan Leon, who starts his career in AA for the Nashville Tennesseans. Leon is the best hitter to come from the International curcuit thus far, with solid power and a good eye that should allow him to look for his pitch. That $15.1 million bonus should keep him in Grand Ol' Oprey tickets for awhile too.More later...