The Orioles announced on Friday that they have signed 17 international players.
According to the Orioles, they’ve given out bonuses of more than $1 million to 16-year-old catcher Samuel Basallo, from the Dominican Republic, and 17-year-old shortstop Maikol Hernández, from Venezuela.
The Orioles say that “Basallo has great size for his age and stands out for his easy, above average raw power to all fields from the left side of the plate. He displays an above average arm behind the plate and shows good aptitude.”
Hernández “is a tall, lanky shortstop from Venezuela who displays a good combination of speed and power. He flashes five-tool potential, with above average tools across the board. Hernández exhibits good hit ability and defensively plays a solid shortstop,” the Orioles say.
Other players rated highly are Victor Celedonio, a switch-hitting 17-year-old Dominican shortstop; left-handed hitting outfielder Teudis Cortorreal, who’s also 17, from the Dominican Republic; Wilmer Feliciano, a 16-year-old Dominican left-handed hitting outfielder; and 16-year-old Dominican catcher Aneudis Mordán.
“Today is a landmark day for the Orioles’ organization and its international efforts,” said Mike Elias, Orioles executive vice president and general manager in a statement. “It marks the first time in club history that we have signed seven-figure prospects … Thanks to the backing of the partnership group, and the excellent work Koby [Perez] and his team have done, we believe this historic signing class will substantially accelerate the construction of our strong pipeline in the international scene, which will benefit the organization for years to come.”
Said Perez, Orioles senior director, international scouting: “The excitement and strong showing of today’s signing news is a tribute to the hard work of our staff. Being in Year Two of retooling our international presence and having to deal with a pandemic is not an easy process, and I couldn’t be prouder of what we have been able to accomplish. We know Orioles fans are excited for what we are building and today is a momentous step forward in making the Orioles a household name in the international market.”
Other players signed by the Orioles are: 16-year-old catcher Yasmil Bucco, from Venezuela; 17-year-old shortstop Eruviel Castillo, from the Dominican; 16-year-old left-handed pitcher Deivy Cruz, Dominican Republic; 17-year-old shortstop Anderson De Los Santos, Dominican Republic; 16-year-old outfielder Hector Jiménez, Dominican Republic; 16-year-old outfielder Junior Lara, Dominican Republic; 16-year-old outfielder Ángel Peña, Dominican Republic; 17-year-old left-handed pitcher Elvis Polanco, Dominican Republic; 17-year-old catcher Carlos Rodriguez and 19-year-old shortstop Grabiel Salazar, Venezuela; and 16-year-old shortstop Angel Tejada, Dominican Republic.
Follow Rich Dubroff on Twitter @RichDubroffMLB
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