Yukon's James finally a Marlin
Tomorrow morning, Chad James will get back on a plane and head back to Florida, just a few days after a whirlwind trip to Miami for a physical after he agreed to a contract with the Marlins.
Monday evening, James invited a large group of family and friends to Brix restaurant in Bricktown for a signing ceremony. It felt in a lot of ways like a college signing ceremony. But sitting just a couple feet to James’ left was a reminder of the difference. Florida scouting director Stan Meek, a former OU baseball coach, had a huge World Series ring on his finger, a reminder of the Marlins’ improbable 2003 run.
This is a real business.
Which is why, Friday, James had to undergo about six hours of tests, ranging from a workup by a cardiologist to blood work, before he could get the green light to sign. Because he went through the process on Friday, James had to sit overnight while waiting word.
“It was a long night,” James said. “You never know if they’re going to find something or what.”
But they didn’t, James was cleared and his professional career is about to get underway.
Just before the draft, James had said he wanted to sign quick. But while the Marlins hoped a long signing process would be condensed, economic realities with the Marlins made that really unlikely.
The Marlins, at least until they move into their new ballpark, at least compete like a small-market team. So they had to stick relatively close to the slot ranges, which MLB commissioner Bud Selig requested teams drop by anout 10 percent from last year. And James didn’t want to compromise that financial end just to get signed. So he sat. And sat. And sat.
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