Full list of new Atlanta Braves added on International Signing day
Yesterday we told you of the biggest signings as the International market opened. The Atlanta Braves weren’t done, though.
The Atlanta Braves were quite busy in Latin America yesterday — for the first time in several years.
With no restrictions on their actions — well, other than obeying the rules as much as the other 29 clubs in the league — the international scouting division seemed like they were out to make up for lost time.
Thus far — and there’s still opportunities to add more players — the Braves have now either signed or received solid commitments from fifteen teen-aged prospects from Latin American countries.
Here’s the full list to this date, as compiled from BaseballAmerica.com:
- Diego Benitez, SS, Venezuela
- Douglas Glod, OF, Venezuela
- Juan Bito, SS, Dominican Republic
- Maximo Maria, OF, Dominican Republic
- Robert Gonzalez, OF, Dominican Republic
- Jhonly Taveras, RHP, Dominican Republic
- Genderson Almonte, RHP, Dominican Republic
- Alexander Martinez, C, Venezuela
- Cristian Suarez, 3B, Dominican Republic
- Elian Garcia, OF, Dominican Republic
- Josnaider Orellana, C, Venezuela
- Leiker Figueroa, SS, Venezuela
- Didier Fuentes, RHP, Colombia
- Jhonny Martinez, RHP, Venezuela
- Yorvi Pirela, RHP, Venezuela
From this point, these kids will head to the team’s baseball academy in the Dominican Republic to continue their schooling and prepare for the upcoming Dominican Summer League.
The top three are the ones that the organization has invested heavily in, spending the bunk of their allotted $5.179 million: $2.5 million and $1.3 million for Benitez and Glod, respectively.
EDIT: Bonus numbers added:
Signing bonuses below $10,000 do not count against the allowable bonus pool, so there’s still an opportunity for a few additions along the way, though you can look at this list as the players who are probably highest on the priority list.
How Do The Braves Compare?
It’s very difficult at this stage to make any sweeping statements about the talent that any team might have accumulated this weekend. In terms of the dollars spent… most teams are fairly balanced, with bonus pools between $4.6 million and $6.2 million available to spend.
While there isn’t a draft to ensure any kind of equity, these dollar limits do restrict what any single team can do in offering bonus monies, so that fact does enforce some kind of talent distribution as the better prospects hunt for the available bigger bucks.
Add to that these considerations:
- Many — probably 90% or more — of these kids will wash out of the system at some point.
- Most of this week’s signees are here to support the better prospects: to be teammates and scrimmage help for those with the best chances to succeed.
So the only real comparison point may be this right now: the sheer number of kids inked to deals by each team… and you might be surprised at the disparity:
- Dodgers – 29 signees
- Orioles – 24
- Mets – 21
- Padres – 20
- Pirates – 19
- Rangers – 19
- Brewers – 17
- Guardians – 16
- Braves – 15
- Marlins – 15
Clearly, the Dodgers “won” the day with the most signees… which you can think of as the most lottery tickets in this hunt for the next great Latin American player.
Atlanta, for their part, has landed a Top 10 quantity of players, and the importance of this is about filling out their development teams in the Dominican Republic… the very ones that have been shorted during the time of the penalties.
Other clubs have chosen not to invest in this player pool, and that… frankly doesn’t make good business sense. The Orioles used to be one of these teams, but clearly has reversed course in a big way.
But while every MLB has made signings this weekend, some have … taken a different road.
The White Sox have the smallest number of signees… 3. Frugal spending Oakland signed 4. Most of the others not mentioned above were at 10 players and fewer.
Surprisingly, the Yankees were among this group at just 6.
The Dominican Republic is well represented, with 180 signees. Venezuela is next at 146, and then there’s a huge drop off from there.
The rest of the census is: Cuba (15), Panama (12), Colombia (9), Mexico (5), Nicaragua (3 — all of these went to Milwaukee), Bahamas (3), and just one representative each from Taiwan, South Korea, Aruba, Spain and Curacao (the Dodgers landing the latter pair).
Note: BaseballAmerica sources were used for these counts. One player who signed with the Twins did not have his country of origin listed properly, and thus is not accounted for above.
So it’s a good “restart” for the Atlanta Braves. Time will tell from here how these kids progress, but their chance to be baseball professionals starts now.