Via Jeff Passan, top Cuban prospect Yoan Moncada was officially declared a free agent by MLB today. He is now eligible to sign with any team. According to Passan's report, MLB will require all players wishing to come over to sign with teams to provide a sworn affidavit stating that they have established residency in another country, have no intention of going back to Cuba, and are not Cuban government officials. This will allow them to receive the general unblocking license from the US government that was the apparent holdup previously. Funny how that first story came out last week about MLB dragging its feet on the licences and now we have a resolution this week.
With MLB's shenanigans in the rearview, the Yankees move right to the front of the line of favorites to sign Moncada. They have until June 15th of this year to make him any offer they want plus a 100% penalty tax on the deal. If it ends up taking $30-40 mil to sign Moncada, as some have estimated, it will be a $60-80 million total investment for the paying team. The Yanks are best equipped to make that monetary commitment and take the tax hit.
I'd absolute love for a deal to get made quickly here and for the Yanks to announce the deal, but I wouldn't be surprised if he and his agent at least take some time to consider offers from all 3 of the top contenders: the Yanks, the Red Sox, and the Dodgers. The important thing here is that Moncada has been unblocked and eligible to sign during this signing period, when the Yankees still have a legit chance to land him.