In 2014, the Yankees made headlines by singing nine out of the top 30 international prospects, including Juan De Leon, Nelson Gomez, Wilkerman Garcia, Dermis Garcia, Miguel Flames, Hoy Jun Park, Jonathan Amundaray, Bryan Emery, Diego Castillo, and Antonio Arias. After they went over their international bonus pool in the 2014-2015 signing period they have been unable to sign anyone to a deal in excess of $300,000 for the last two years.
Last year, despite the penalties accrued, they continued bringing in talent by signing another 15 prospects to minor league deals. 2016 will be their last year under such restrictions, but they are still going strong in the international market, even with the singing limitations.
The Yankees have already signed a total of seven players with others likely to ink deals over the next few weeks. Chief among them is Dominican right-handed pitcher Roancy Contreras, who is considered to be the 25th best prospect in this signing period, according to Baseball America. He is also the third-best pitcher and second-best righty on BA's top 50 list. Ben Badler of Baseball America believes he can be a starter going forward with a 92-93 mph fastball and a sharp curveball with tight spin. At 16 years old he measures out to be 5-foot-10 and 180 pounds, but he'll surely grow in time, so there's likely some projectability there.
Aside from Contreras, the Yankees have also brought in catcher Saul Torres out of the Dominican Republic, signing him to a $300,000 deal.
Dominican catcher Saul Torres got $300,000 from the @Yankees pic.twitter.com/xbvDNZ8OxR— Baseball America (@BaseballAmerica) July 2, 2016
From the Dominican Republic, they have signed shortstop Jose Devers, the cousin of Red Sox third base prospect Rafael Devers, and right-hander Wellington Diaz. From Venezuela, the Yankees have signed shortstop Asdrubal Alvarez, and outfielders Jesus Severino and Christian Andrade. Baseball America also has them connected to Venezuelan shortstop Oswald Peraza, who they have signed to a $175,000 contract.
Keep in mind that these kids are 16 years old and will likely start their professional careers in the Dominican Summer League, or GCL at the highest. We won't be seeing any of these people on any prospect lists anytime soon, so be patient. The players brought in during the 2014-15 signing period are just starting to come into their own as outfielder Estevan Florial, third baseman Dermis Garcia, and shortstop Wilkerman Garcia are currently at Pulaski, the team's new advanced rookie team.