The Seattle Mariners have signed the 18th ranked International prospect, a teenage shortstop from the Dominican by the name of Christopher Torres, according to a report on MLB.com by Jesse Sanchez.
According to Sanchez, Torres is a switch-hitting shortstop with potentially more power from the right side. He signed with the Mariners for a signing bonus of $375,000.
He joins a group of signees that includes the 8th-ranked prospect Brayan Hernandez, catcher Ismerlin Mota and 11 other international prospects the M’s have signed since the signing period began July 2.
Seattle’s was allotted a signing bonus pool of $3,440,700 this year. With the signing of Torres, the club has now spent an estimated $3.55 million, which puts them in the penalty.
Teams that exceed the pool by up to 5% have to pay a 100% tax on the overage. Teams that exceed the pools by 5-10% are not allowed to sign a player for more than $500,000 during the next signing period, and they must pay the tax on the overage.
Teams that exceed the pools by 10-15% are not allowed to sign a player for more than $300,000 during the next signing period and pay the overage tax. The most severe penalty comes at over 15%, which includes paying the overage tax as well as not being able to sign a player for over $300K for the next two years.
Right now, the Mariners are in the “up to 5%” penalty.
The Mariners have been aggressive in their pursuit of international players, recognizing this ever-growing market filled with talented ballplayers.