The White Sox are out of the two-year penalty as a result of their effort in acquiring Luis Robert during the 2016-17 international signing period. Subsequently, the Sox were slotted at roughly $5.4 million for this period and committed to five players.
As expected, the White Sox signed 22-year-old Cuban shortstop Yolbert Sanchez as well as 17-year-old Elijah Tatis, who is the brother of Fernando Tatis Jr. The organization committed to four other prospects as well, including: third baseman Wilfred Veras, catcher Ricardo Aguilar, right-handed pitcher Christian Mena and right-handed pitcher Erick Bello.
Source: The White Sox are expected to sign Cuban SS Yolbert Sanchez, INF Elijah Tatis (Fernando’s brother), 3B Wilfred Veras, RHPs Christian Mena and Erick Bello later today. @mlbpipeline https://t.co/VkyT1PafgI
— Jesse Sanchez (@JesseSanchezMLB) July 2, 2019
According to a report, Sanchez signed for $2.5 million, while Tatis for $500,000. Sanchez, per MLB Pipeline, was the No. 5 rated international prospect in 2018. Our James Fox reported the likelihood of the Sanchez signing back in March.
Source: The #WhiteSox are interested in Cuban SS Yolbert Sanchez. Bonus amount would likely be in $2-$2.5 million range. 21 year old with plus arm, speed and defense. Sanchez would have to wait until 7/2 to sign.
— James Fox (@JamesFox917) March 26, 2019
Sanchez highlights the White Sox international signing class. The shortstop is widely considered to have a Major League-caliber glove and is graded to have a 65 fielding tool, 55 arm along with 55-grade speed. As a 22-year-old, Sanchez is considered an advanced international prospect with room to grow in his tools to ultimately become Major League ready. The Sox may decide to begin Sanchez’s career in advanced-A Winston Salem.
In three years in the Cuban National Series, Sanchez accumulated a career slash line of .297/.338/.345 in 128 games. His offensive game was graded much lower than his defensive skill, as the new White Sox prospect owns 45 grade hitting and power tools. For more information on Yolbert Sanchez, read Fox’s piece from March.
Yolbert Sanchez highlights courtesy bandicam.com
Tatis’ signing was reported back in April, but needed to wait until the official July 2 date for the agreement to become official. Projecting a teenager’s tools is a bit murkier than a polished Yolbert Sanchez in comparison, but scouts have noted Tatis has potential to grow into his frame, has “intriguing” power and possess a strong and accurate throwing arm.
This video from Elijah Tatis’ Instagram highlights a roped single to left back in June 2018, while the below example via Sox On 35th is a home run he hit in July 2018. Tatis will likely begin his White Sox career in the Dominican Summer League affiliate.
Video of Elijah Tatis hitting a home run, via his Instagram account. pic.twitter.com/gvn8ZTyfiD
— Sox On 35th (@SoxOn35th) April 10, 2019
Meanwhile, right-hander Christian Mena’s signing was made official this afternoon. Mena is a 16-year-old listed 6-3, 180 and was clocked at 86-88mph at a Top-10 showcase in Vegas. The new White Sox pitcher struck out six of 11 batters he faced. Mena and the Sox agreed to a $250,000 deal.
This video provided by Baseball America’s Ben Badler via his Instagram showcases a brief example of what the Sox are getting in the 16-year-old Mena.
New White Sox third baseman Wilfred Veras is the son of former Boston Red Sox corner infielder Wilton Veras. Wilfred is connected to the Tatis family genes himself, as his mother is the sister of Fernando Tatis Sr.
Sources: Another prospect signed by @whitesox. Dominican 3B Wilfre Veras (16)(6.1) agreed deal 200.000 bonus. Veras is the nephew of Fernando Tatis and son of Wilton Veras (Big League with Boston 1999-2000). Some scouts believe that he has more than 55 power of 80 scale. pic.twitter.com/Ex0i4AzbaW
— Francys Romero (@FrancysRomero10) July 2, 2019
The White Sox have come to terms with right-handed pitcher Erick Bello and also added Venezuelan catcher Ricardo Aguilar.
2019 official signings:
- Yolbert Sanchez SS, Cuba ($2.5M)
- Elijah Tatis INF, Dominican Republic ($500,000)
- Christian Mena RHP, Dominican Republic ($250,000)
- Erick Bello RHP, Dominican Republic
- Wilfred Veras 3B, Dominican Republic
- Ricardo Aguilar C, Venezuela
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