Published: Thu, December 07, 2017
Sports | By Nelson Rowe

Angels acquire $1 million in worldwide slot money from the Twins

Angels acquire $1 million in worldwide slot money from the Twins

This is significant because the Mariners and Angels are two of seven teams still in the running for Ohtani, who profiles as both a potential ace on the mound and impact hitter at the plate, and Ohtani is subject to the strict bonus limits that cover July 2 worldwide free agents.

Shohei Ohtani had no interest in signing with the Twins, so they are using global bonus money to trade for young prospects from teams in the Ohtani sweepstakes.

The 23-year-old is limited to a minor league contract because of restrictions imposed by the MLB collective bargaining agreement. This move comes moments after the Mariners traded catching prospect David Banuelos to the Twins for the same amount of global funds.

Banuelos immediately becomes the top catching prospect in the Twins' system, ahead of 2016 second-rounder Ben Rortvedt and projected 2018 backup Mitch Garver, their minor league player of the year. The Twins had $3.2 million in their worldwide pool, but Ohtani narrowed the list of teams he was considering to seven finalists, and the Twins were not on the list.

Pearson, 19, was selected by the Angels in the third round of the 2017 draft. In 65 games at the plate, he hit.332/.403/.540 with eight home runs, 31 RBI and 16 doubles.

The Giants, Dodgers, Padres and Cubs can only offer Ohtani a bonus of $300,000 because they exceeded their bonus pool under the previous collective bargaining agreement.

Matt Snyder of CBSSports.com noted Ohtani and his representatives met with all seven finalists by the conclusion of Tuesday, suggesting either a choice or a narrowing of the field could be the next step.

The Angels followed suit with a trade of their own with the Twins, adding $1 million as well to bump their available pool to $2.315 million. Because Ohtani is under 25 he is subject to global spending limits, which severely limits his earning power on the free market.

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