On the day the Cubs concluded the three-day draft, they also returned their sights strongly toward touted Cuban outfield prospect Jorge Soler, who worked out for many teams - including the Cubs - on Wednesday.
``We've obviously scouted him extensively. A lot of teams have,'' general manager Jed Hoyer said. ``We had a similar situation with [Yoenis] Cesepedes this winter. It'll be intriguing. But certainly we've done our work on him.''
According to sources last November, the Cubs targeted Soler, 20, more than Cespedes, who eventually signed a four-year deal with Oakland for the same $36 million the Cubs were offering over six.
Soler, a Cuban defector who only became an eligible free agent this month, has until July 2 to sign a deal before baseball's new restrictions on international free agent signings take effect.
``Judging from all the information we've gathered and articles I've read, I think [the field of interested teams] is very wide,'' Hoyer said. ``It's not surprising. He's really talented. And there is that July 2 uniqueness that adds to it.''
Meanwhile, the Cubs finished off a pitching-heavy draft Wednesday, having used 22 of their 42 picks on pitchers, including 13 of their first 19.
``It went about according to plan as far as we talked about adding pitching depth to the system,'' Hoyer said. ``We really pounded away on pitching after we took [center fielder Albert] Almora with the first pick.
``I think a lot of teams feel good about their draft today. Everyone had a good draft, and we'll find out in five years if we were right.''