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Report: Chicago Cubs Favorites to Sign Top International Prospect

The Chicago Cubs top international target keeps rising on prospect leaderboards.
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The Chicago Cubs are expected to sign MLB's no. six ranked international prospect.

There's been smoke around Derniche Valdez for several months, but he's risen up prospect charts as of late, and he's been further linked to by Cubs minor league reporter Greg Zumach.

Valdez is the third-highest ranked shortstop among all international prospects. He's a right-handed 16-year-old out of the Dominican Republic, who excels at almost everything on the baseball diamond.

According to MLB Pipeline, Valdez is 55-grade in every tool but run, in which he's graded 50.

Their scouting report believes he'll be able to stay at shortstop for the foreseeable future due to his "good instincts", "plus-arm potential" and "natural field presence".

Furthermore, he projects to be a middle-of-the-order bat if he continues to develop and mature at a normal rate.

Currently, he trains with former-MLBer Franklin Taveras in the Dominican Republic. Taveras spent 11 years in the big leagues, eight of which were with the Pittsburgh Pirates, he never played a single inning off shortstop throughout his entire career. He stole 40+ bases four times, leading the league with 70 in 1977.

Valdez will probably sign with the Cubs for somewhere in the range of $2.5 million.

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