First look at the 2009 IFA class

Yanks considered Matsui for Washburn
Banks facing blowback over NY stadium deals

The July International Signing Period is one of most unique experiences baseball has to offer. The players signed out of Latin America sound too good to be true, mostly because there’s so little information about them that whatever info we do have gets extrapolated out into something otherworldly. Take Edward Salcedo for example. He was beyond uberhyped last year, yet never signed with a team. If he was as good as advertised, wouldn’t someone have signed him by now?

One of this year’s top IFA prospects is Rafael DePaula of the Dominican, who according to this article (here’s the translated article) throws 93 with two excellent breaking balls and clean mechanics. The 16 year old righty already stands 6’3″, so he’s still got a ton of projection left. Let the hype begin. (h/t Michael Ruiz for the email)

Yanks considered Matsui for Washburn
Banks facing blowback over NY stadium deals
  • Mike Pop

    What about Yulieski Gourriel?????

    • Tom Zig

      If he signs with the Yanks – Bust
      If he signs with the Sox – Theo teh Hero

      • John

        No way Theo sign a non-white player…

        • BJ

          That is so not PC. I think they prefer to be called “gritty”.

  • BJ

    Interesting stuff. Mike, do you think the economy will cause teams to avoid international signings in a similar way to the FA market?

    BTW this would have been a much more relevant post for me to bring up that movie…

  • AndrewYF

    “Acevedo was more objective in saying that: “Look at this girl Paula is very similar in its mechanics with the stellar cast of Boston pitcher, Josh Beckett, which is saying something.””

    He’s a she???

    • BJ


      “Joven” is gender neutral meaning a “youth”, and google probably got rid of the “De” and identified “Paula” as a female name.

      Pretty funny tho, still can’t figure where google got the word “cast” from.

  • John

    The Yanks should sign a lot of the good players to make up for last year’s draft somewhat.

    • steve (different one)

      you should be the GM, this is an incredible idea.

      i can’t believe no one thought to sign good players.

      • John

        Thanks…I’ve been waiting on the call from the Yanks. Maybe you can get the word to them? If so, I’ll make you my assistant GM!!!

        • Dave M

          If you get the job, can I be your assistant?

  • Reggie C.

    The haul only has to be 3 players deep.
    1. Best right handed pitcher available
    2. Best middle infielder available
    3. Best outfielder available

    Its easy.

    • Mike Pop

      You should be GM.

    • Troy

      haha…might as well try and blow up the IFA market as well :)

  • Jake H

    It seems the best IFA are the ones who don’t get huge deals.

    • BJ

      That actually sounds kinda right. I wonder if it is a motivation thing or just that the teams who are paying less have a worse MLB team and are more likely to give them a shot.

      Alternatively, is it a case of the most talented kids taking less money for a better chance at the show, or are these guys just falling under the radar of the hype machine?

      • Jake H

        I just think that the kids only get scouted by a team and they get an offer before the signing period. They sign it but the team doesn’t announce it until July 2nd. Also remember up until recently American agents weren’t representing those kids, local agents were. I bet some of them saw a pay day of 50k and had their clients sign the agreement without trying to get a bigger deal.

      • steve (different one)

        it’s b/c these kids are 16 years old and every one of them is a huge gamble.

        sometimes the lesser names pan out and sometimes the big names don’t.

  • Brian Cashman is watching

    More is better than less, so I hope they sign as many as possible. Most prospects fail, so the idea of taking on many prospects sounds beneficial to me so that there is a higher chance of hitting on something that might work.

    Is Kevin DeLeon stateside yet?

    • Jake H

      He will be this year.

  • Rebecca-Optimist Prime

    Article translated by human translation and not google (aka I’m bored):

    Rafael De Paula, futura estrella del box

    Cuqui Acevedo lo compara con el estelar lanzador de Boston, Josh Beckett
    Rafael De Paula.

    Rafael De Paula, future star of the box

    Cuqui Acevedo compares him to the star pitcher of Boston, Josh Beckett: Rafael De Paula

    santo domingo. Sin dudas algunas, podemos decir que la República Dominicana ha sido uno de los países mejores exportadores de lanzadores para el béisbol organizador de los Estados Unidos.

    Santo Domingo–Without some doubts, we can say that the Dominican Republic has been one of the best exporting countries of pitchers for baseball organizations in the United States

    Basta solo con mencionar nombres ilustres como Juan Marichal, miembro del Salón de la Fama de Cooperstown, Pedro Martínez, Bartolo Colón, Ervin Santana, entre otros, para darnos cuenta de la realidad.

    It is enough only to mention illustrious names like Jaun Marichal, Hall of Fame member, Pedro Martinez, Bartolo Colon, Ervin Santana, and others, to give realization to the story.

    Por lo que con el joven prospecto lanzador derecho Rafael De Paula parece ser que la historia continuará, ya que con apenas 16 años de edad se perfila como una estrella naciente del pitcheo dominicano.

    For this, the young RHP prospect Rafael De Paula seems that he could be the coninuation of this history, already as young as 16 years old, he profiles as a star pitcher born in the Dominican

    “Rafael De Paula es lo que se llama un joven prodigio del montículo”, dijo el novel scout Héctor Acevedo sobre el derecho de 6¨3 de estatura que tira por encima de las 93 millas y posee excelente cambio, curva y slider con control fuera de serie.

    “Rafael De Paula is the type that you call a young prodigy of the mound,” said the scout Hector Acevedo about the right hander who is 6?3? and can through a fastball (?) at 93 mph and has an excellent change, curve and slider with strong control.

    Agregó que en el tiempo que tiene trabajando con jóvenes talentosos nunca antes había visto a un lanzador con una mecánica de lanzar como la De Paula.

    He agreed that in the time that he has worked with young talents he has never seen a pitcher with pitching mechanics like those of De Paula .

    “Tiene una mecánica de tirar atractiva, ya que es bastante limpia y corta, la cual llama la atención de los buscatalentos”, precisó Acevedo, quien es hijo del súper scout Cuqui Acevedo.

    “He has an attractive throwing mechanics, and it is already rather clean and short, which has caught the attention of scounts (literally talent-lookers),” Acevedo said, who is the son of super scout Cuqui Acevedo.

    Acevedo fue más objetivo al decir que: “Mira este joven De Paula tiene bastante similitud en su mecánica de lanzar con el estelar pitcher de Boston, Josh Beckett, que es mucho decir”.

    Acevedo was more objective, saying that “look at this young De Paula, he has similar mechanics to pitchers like the star pitcher of Boston, Josh Becket, which is a lot to say.“

    • Manimal

      Thank you senorita.

      I haven’t talked to you since before that Joba/lester thing. How was it?

  • kSturnz

    if you don’t get him $man, you are fired!!!~!!!@1111

    • Mike Pop

      I sware to God Cashman, if you fuck this up!!!.

    • Troy

      Who cares if you got C.C. and Tex…if you don’t get this young fella, you suck!!!

  • YankFanDave

    “Rafael DePaula of the Dominican,…The 16 year old righty already stands 6?3?.” Did you see the photo of this guy? — 16 going on 21.

  • NC Saint

    I’m hesitant to bring this up after all the blowback on my ‘literally’ post the other day, but ‘one of [the] most unique’? Come now.

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