Texas Rangers: Jose Almonte
The Rangers signed Dominican outfielder Jose Almonte, shortstop Yeyson Yrizarri and right-handed pitcher Marcos Diplan, according to Baseball America.
Almonte agreed to a $1.8 million deal. Yrizarri signed for $1.35 million. Diplan signed for $1.3 million.
The 16-year-old Almonte can play outfield or third base. He is 6-foot-4, weighs 205 pounds and is considered to be an above-average athlete with a strong and athletic build.
Yrizarri, also 16, is a shortstop who throws well and can also run. The 6-foot-1, 175-pound prospect has impressed scouts with his baseball IQ and instincts.
The 16-year old Diplan, who is 5-foot-10, 160 pounds, has a fastball that tops out at 94 mph and also a changeup and curveball.
The Rangers didn't comment on specific players because physicals are pending.
"We always said we want to build this thing from the ground up to keep a strong base," Rangers general manager Jon Daniels said. "I think it allows you to do different things at the big league level. This time of year with the draft, July 2 and the trade deadline, I’m constantly reminded how fortunate we are there."
The Rangers had a pool of $2.9 million in money to sign international players, so they might face taxes by going over. Or they could acquire pool money from another organization.
Beras completes suspension: Teenage outfielder Jairo Beras, the Rangers' top international signing last year, has completed his major league mandated suspension and was in the rookie league Arizona Rangers' lineup on Tuesday, general manager Jon Daniels said.
Beras was suspended last summer until July 1, 2013, for providing a false date of birth when registering with Major League Baseball as a prospect. The league investigated Beras' age after the Rangers contended he was 17 and eligible to sign with the organization prior to the new collective bargaining agreement rules, which took effect earlier this month.
Reports surfaced in February the Rangers had agreed to terms on a $4.5 million bonus with the 6-foot-5 Dominican product. MLB and most teams thought Beras was 16 and, therefore, would fall under the cap of $2.9 million that teams had to dole out to international players for a year, starting July 2, 2012.
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