Mariners News: M’s Ink Int’l SS Prospect Carlos Vargas


The International Free Agent frenzy officially kicked off today, and the Seattle Mariners are already making headlines. According to’ Jesse Sanchez, Seattle signed 16-year-old Dominican shortstop prospect Carlos Vargas to a $1.7 million signing bonus. The M’s are typically very active on the International market, and Vargas represents the latest big ticket purchase.

The young middle infielder has elite size at 6’3/180 lbs. Vargas was ranked as the 26th best international free agent this year by He bats and throws from the right side.

Scouts rave about Vargas’ arm strength, and his glove is said to be above average as well. Defense is all well and good, but he received the big bonus because of his potential to hit for power at the plate. Vargas generates a ton of raw power, and figures to hit for more average as he matures. The Moca, DR product does many things well, but scouts do not consider him to be the best athlete. Vargas has a chance to stay at short, but third base would likely suit his skill set better.

Perhaps the most impressive trait Vargas has is confidence. Carlos’ brother, Emilio Vargas is a pitcher in the Arizona Diamondbacks system. The elder Vargas’ success appears to have paved the way for Carlos. Scouts are very impressed with Carlos’ work ethic and maturity. The young man knows exactly what the first few years of his career will look like, and that is never a bad thing.

Here is some video of Carlos Vargas hitting:

It is easy to see why the Mariners like Vargas so much. His power is very impressive for a 16-year-old, as his approach at the plate. There are a lot of moving parts to his swing, particularly the extreme leg kick. Vargas has a long swing, and that can lead to big strikeout numbers. I expect making his swing more compact will be first priority for Seattle. Regardless, Vargas shows plenty of potential with the stick. He has the raw tools necessary to play in the big leagues one day.

Here is some footage of Carlos fielding ground balls:

Defensively, Vargas has a little bit of work to do. He does a nice job of fielding grounders, and his arm is more than good enough to play up the middle. However, Vargas does not have a very quick release. Carlos’ brother is a pitcher, and his throwing motion is very similar to that of a pitcher. He is not a great athlete, and I expect him to shift to third base in the near future.

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Carlos Vargas has big league size, and looks similar in body type to Carlos Correa and Alex Rodriguez. I do not think he has the same ceiling as either one of those players, but obviously the Mariners have high hopes for Vargas. He will spend the first few seasons of his career in developmental leagues. If all goes according to plan, Vargas could be suiting up for the Everrett AquaSox within the next 3 years.

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