It's official. Yonder Alonso will not be returning to the University of Miami. The left-handed, power-hitting first baseman signed a $4.55 million deal late Friday night, an hour before the midnight deadline, to officially end his career as a Hurricane.
Alonso's agent Mike Maulini called me at 11:15 p.m. and had Yonder talk with me for about 10 minutes. Both are definitely relieved. I can't say it's a surprise. Even though Yonder told me last week there was a 50-50 chance he'd return for his senior season because contract negotiations weren't going well, the Reds weren't going to let him get away. They were supposedly $4 million apart (Yonder was asking for $7 mil, and the Reds were looking at $3).
Alonso, who led UM to the College World Series in June, says he plans to finish school at UM and get his degree in Criminology. I got to say I'm happy for Yonder. When he came out of Coral Gables High as the All-Dade Hitter of the Year, he was drafted and offered $170K to sign a pro contract.
Instead, he went to UM and made the most of it. Included in his $4.55 million, 4-year deal is a $2 million signing bonus. "My family doesn't know what to do," Alonso said. "They're on cloud nine."
Maulini, who also advises UM signee Harold Martinez, said the former Braddock shortstop will be a Cane. Maulini said contract negotiations with the Texas Rangers broke off earlier this week.