Earlier this month, I wrote a story about the Yankees’ July 2 international prospect class. One player the Yankees appeared to have agreed to terms with was right-handed pitcher Osiel Rodriguez. The deal, however, didn’t appear to come together when first reported, as Rodriguez remained unsigned.
That changed, however, on Sunday afternoon, when the Yankees signed Rodriguez to a $600,000 bonus. It’s believed that they used some of the money acquired from the Cardinals in the Chasen Shreve trade to pay the 16-year-old.
After trading for more international bonus pool space, the Yankees today signed Osiel Rodriguez for $600,000, as @jorgeebro reported.— Ben Badler (@BenBadler) July 29, 2018
Rodriguez is the No. 1 international pitching prospect this year: https://t.co/zJaurxTLUc pic.twitter.com/P942GQEhGW
Ben Badler of Baseball America provided a scouting report on Rodriguez after watching him pitch last fall. “His fastball sat at 95 mph and touched 96 twice,” Badler noted, “with one at 94 and another at 93 mph. Rodriguez threw 13 of his 17 pitches for strikes with a mix of nine fastballs and eight curveballs at 75-78 mph.”
He also provided some in-game footage:
Here's the newest Yankees prospect, Osiel Rodriguez, from when I saw him pitch in San Pedro de Macoris in November. He was 15 and threw 96 mph that day. https://t.co/zJaurxTLUc pic.twitter.com/8RPuYXn1aq— Ben Badler (@BenBadler) July 29, 2018
With Rodriguez officially in the organization, this shows the continued importance of international talent in the league. The Yankees have had great success with those players throughout the years; several members of the current roster joined the team as international amateurs. And considering the recent trade with the White Sox, one can expect more signings are on the way.