The Cubs announced on Tuesday that they had reached agreement on a 2-year deal with infielder Neifi Perez. The deal will keep Neifi in Chicago through the 2007 season. The deal is worth $5 million; $2.5 million per year and this probably means the end of Nomar Garciaparra’s playing days for the Cubs.
The Cubs have not guaranteed Perez a starting position. I did not see this coming. I figured Perez would not want to be a bench player anymore after the season he had. I could see a one-year deal, but a two-year deal…. I do not understand. Are the Cubs going to focus all of their attention on Rafael Furcal or does this mean Perez will be the starting shortstop in 2006? The Cubs have spent a lot of money on Glendon Rusch and Neifi Perez in the last month. Rusch signed a two year deal worth $6 million with $1 million worth of incentives and now Perez signs a two year $5 million dollar contract….that is a lot of money for a back of the rotation starter and a utility infielder.
Perez had a serviceable year, do not get me wrong (.274/9/54), but he is not an everyday player on a playoff team. Perez is friends (and has the same agent) as Rafael Furcal, is this a way to get Furcal? I mentioned during my 2005 Season Review, I did not see Neifi returning to the Cubs. Here is some of the post:
2006 Outlook – Neifi will not want to be a bench player again in 2006 and because if this I do not see him in the mix for 2006. I think Perez would be a better option to keep over Macias, but other teams will be bidding for his service. Depending on how the Cubs handle Nomar could have an affect on Neifi’s future in Chicago. According to the Rocky Mountain News the Rockies are interested in resigning Neifi. Stay tuned.
The more I think about this….I really do not understand. With the signing of Perez where will the Cubs offense come from? Where does Ronny Cedeno fit in? Do they trade Todd Walker? Help….please!!