The international signing period began on July 2, and the Dodgers have inked four players thus far. Those players are 16-year-old SS Lucas Tirado from Dominican Republic, 16-year-old OF Daniel Padilla from Venezuela, 16-year-old RHP Alvaro Trillo from Venezuela, and 17-year-old RHP Sven Schuller from Germany.
Out of those four, the biggest name is undoubtedly Tirado, who was inked for $1 million. Tirado wasn’t ranked in the top 30 international prospects by Ben Badler of Baseball America, but Badler did have this to say about him:
Tirado, 16, has played in both the Dominican Prospect League and the International Prospect League, showing a compact swing from the left side. He mostly works gap to gap, but he’ll flash solid raw power in batting practice and has projectable size at 6-foot-2, 180 pounds. He’s an intelligent player with an even-keel approach to the game.
Tirado has a sweet stroke but he doesn’t always take it to games. He’ll swing through fastballs, which some scouts think is a bat speed issue, while others think his stroke gets bigger in games. He’s not a free-swinger though, as he shows some ability to work the count. He’s a below-average runner with a fringy arm who doesn’t have the range for shortstop. In an ideal world he would make enough strides defensively to play second base.
Meanwhile, Jonathan Mayo of MLB.com seemed to like Tirado a bit more.
A 2012 Under Armour All-American, Tirado impresses scouts with his arm strength and the way he catches the ball at shortstop. Those attributes combined with his good footwork on defense give him a chance to stay at the position for a long time. He might also shift to third base or second base in the future.
At the plate, the switch-hitter has one of the better left-handed swings in the entire class – a line-drive stroke to all fields – and good bat speed. He’s been described as “raw” and there is still room for improvement offensively, but Tirado has shown occasional power and many believe he will improve at the plate as he matures.
Scouts like his running ability on the bases, but they would like to see an increase in overall body strength and muscle. The 6-foot-1, 186-pound infielder has been praised for his makeup and baseball IQ. He is the quintessential “good kid,” because he’s a team player and has a good attitude.
Neither Trillo, Padilla, nor Schuller were ranked among the top 30 international prospects by BA, but Padilla did have a blurb written about him:
Padilla has an intriguing skill set with plus speed, a strong arm and good power potential. The Dodgers are one of the teams that might make a run at Padilla.
The Dodgers have now spent $1.4 million on three players in the international market, with Schuller’s bonus still a mystery. After trading for Carlos Marmol, a deal in which the Dodgers acquired $209,700 in bonus money, the team had $2,322,600 to spend in this signing period. So, at most, they have around $900,000 left to work with, unless they are willing to accept penalties.
In 2013 MLB Draft news, the Dodgers signed Billy Flamion (15), Greg Harris (17), and Jose DeLeon (24) to contracts. Flamion was inked for $100,000, while no details were given about DeLeon’s bonus. Harris is the interesting case, though, as he was signed for an over-slot amount of $175,000.
Dodgers 2013 Draft Recap
Chris Anderson (1), Tom Windle (2), Cody Bellinger (4), Jacob Rhame (6), Henry Yates (9), Adam Law (12), Thomas Taylor (26) Sign | Brandon Dixon (3), J.D. Underwood (5), Brandon Trinkwon (7), Kyle Farmer (8), Spencer Navin (11), Michael Johnson (14), James McDonald (18), Blake Hennessey (19), James Baune (21), Jake Fisher (22), Kyle Hooper (25), Dillon Moyer (38) Sign | Nick Keener (10), Mike Ahmed (20), Crayton Bare (28), Rob Rogers (32) Sign
Why is Harris’ over-slot deal important? Because the max bonus allowed after the 10th round without it counting against the bonus pool is $100,000. Additionally, as mentioned before, the Dodgers were already teetering close to losing next year’s first rounder.
Fortunately, it appears they still won’t lose their 2014 first-rounder, as fifth-rounder J.D. Underwood‘s bonus was reduced to slot money. Not clear on exactly what changed there, but his deal was previously thought to be ~60k over-slot, which would have definitely put the team over the bonus pool limit.
Redoing the calculations from my previous post puts the Dodgers now at $254,300 over their bonus pool amount, which means they’ll pay the same 75% tax on that money and end up owing $190,725. However, they still squeeze just below that dreaded 5% over total … at 4.9%.
I could do without any more over-slot signings, I think.