I get e-mails or comments on occasion asking me about players and why they haven’t signed yet or if I think they will. Occasionally I hear rumblings by about a certain player but more often than not, there’s just not that much to relay. These things take time and they’re very fluid negotiations. Via BJ Rains, we get this tweet:
Luhnow not excited about talks with Zack Cox, has talked with Austin Wilson: http://tinyurl.com/33denll
To start with, the tweet is misleading. Read the exact quote from Luhnow in the article (which has good info by the way):
Asked if he was confident that the Cardinals and Cox would be able to meet in the middle on a contract before the August 16 deadline, Cardinals’ vice president of scouting and player development Jeff Luhnow didn’t seem overly enthused.
“No because our first selection was part available to us because of some desires that other clubs weren’t willing to even consider,” Luhnow said. “I think that one could be a lengthy process. …We knew that there was a disconnect between what most clubs probably had as a value and what the player was stating that he was wanting to come out as a sophomore, especially elite players at the top of the draft, so we’ll just have to wait and see.”
The key is the lead. Luhnow may not be confident that they’ll meet in the middle, but that’s a far cry from being “not excited” about being able to sign Cox. There’s some liberal interpretation being used in my opinion. The reality is that Luhnow is wise to take a hard line for two reasons: 1) Austin Wilson is great leverage until he firmly says ‘no’ and 2) Cox would be drafted lower in the 2011 draft. Luhnow and the Cardinals have an unusual amount of leverage over the draft-eligible sophomore and I expect them to use it forcefully, as they should.
There’s some updates on Seth Blair, Jordan Swaggerty & Tyrell Jenkins. Also some words on Austin Wilson. I remain unreasonably optimistic that Wilson will sign and that the Cardinals will open up my least favorite euphemism “DeWallet” to get that deal done. Wilson would instantly be a top 5 prospect in the system given his projection, current skills and body type.
To summarize, I expect the Cardinals to sign Blair and Swaggerty without issue. Zach Cox & Austin Wilson will drag things out to the end but one or both will likely sign. Tyrell Jenkins is more of an enigma to me and I’d not be surprised by a yes or no decision from him.