Yankees Grab #9 Rated International Prospect at Bargain Price

The New York Yankees in 2017. Photo by Canadian Press/REX/Shutterstock (8990254e)

It’s been a busy time in New York. The Cardinals took Giovanni Gallegos and Chasen Shreve in exchange for Luke Volt and $1m in international bonus pool money. Meanwhile, Lefty Caleb Frare went to the White Sox for another $1.5m in bonus pool money.

The Yankees acted quickly to plug gaps in their roster. Righty Osiel Rodriguez, ranked 9 on the MLB Pipeline’s Top 30 International Prospects list, signed in a $600k deal. MLB jumped the gun in announcing the deal before the Yankees.

Rodriguez is a formidable unit. Some pundits rate Rodriguez as the best international pitcher signed by the Yankees since Luis Medina three years ago.

MLB scouts clocked his fastball at 97mph, with the pitch consistently hitting the mid-90 mark. His unorthodox style sees his change his arm slot with a variety of angles covering his range of pitches. The Yankees will need to hone his action but maintain the unpredictability; it’s a tough ask.

The Yankees are far from finished in the international market. Sandy Gaston, ranked 14 on the list and another 16-year-old right-handed Cuban prospect, is another the Yankees trained their sites on. The Marlins early interest never materialised into an offer, leaving the Yankees a free run.

Again clocked at 97 mph, the only question mark on his future is whether he will maintain the pitch speed as he grows older. Even so, the MLB Pipeline still rated him “extraordinary”. MLB Pipeline makes a bold statement, declaring Gaston as “the type of pitcher any club would like.”

The question is whether the Yankees are “any club”?