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Phillies agree to sign Miguel Alfredo Gonzalez

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The Cuban righty is headed to Philadelphia, and may join the big league club by the end of the season.

Dennis Grombkowski

The Philadelphia Phillies have agreed to sign Cuban right-hander Miguel Alfredo Gonzalez to a six-year contract worth $48 million in guaranteed money, according to Jeff Passan of Yahoo! Sports. Passan notes that the deal could reach $59 million due to the bonus money involved, and MLB.com's Jesse Sanchez says that the deal includes a vesting option for the 2019 season worth $11 million.

The Phillies beat out the Red Sox to sign Gonzalez, according to Passan, which aligns with Red Sox President/CEO Larry Lucchino's comments that the Sox were "looking pretty hard" at Gonzalez. The Braves, Dodgers, Cubs and Rangers were also seriously involved in the Gonzalez sweepstakes while the Blue Jays, Twins, Yankees and Marlins all showed some level of interest. While Minnesota and Miami were considered longshots due to the price tag, the other teams were all rumored to have a legitimate chance at signing the 26-year old.

Gonzalez, who fled Cuba earlier in the year, impressed major league scouts in two showcases in Tijuana last month. His fastball sat in the mid-90s for most of the showcases, and even touched 97 mph. People within the game project that the right-hander will need a few starts in the minors to start, but will likely be able to join the Phillies' major league rotation for the end of the season.

With this signing, the Phillies have signaled that they will still try to be competitive this season, meaning that they are unlikely to sell key assets before Wednesday's trade deadline. Pieces like Cliff Lee, Michael Young, Jonathan Papelbon and Carlos Ruiz were rumored to be in play in trade talks, but Philadelphia's aggressiveness in the Gonzalez sweepstakes means that they will try to make a playoff run this season. Teams like the Red Sox and Dodgers, who were looking at spending on Gonzalez as an alternative to giving up top prospects for a starter at the deadline, will have to bow to the seller's market if they want to acquire a rotation piece like Bud Norris, Yovani Gallardo, Jake Peavy or Ervin Santana.

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