Sunday, July 12, 2009


The signing period for Major League teams to reach contract agreements with undrafted international players has begun. Players inside the USA, Canada and Puerto Rico are subject to MLB’s June draft, but the rest are considered free agents (although they can’t be signed to deals until July 2).

Several young international players have already made deals with MLB teams, but none have topped last year’s record $4.25 million signing bonus the Oakland Athletics gave Dominican pitcher Michael Ynoa. The top figure this year is the reported $3.1 million shelled out by St. Louis for Dominican outfielder Wagner Mateo, while the Yankees gave Dominican catcher Gary Sanchez $3 million.

The top two unsigned international prospects are said to Dominican shortstop Miguel Angel Sano and Cuban pitcher Aroldis Chapman, who may get an eight-figure signing bonus.

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