White Sox ink four to open international period
Nunez ranks No. 26 on list of International Prospects; catcher Alfaro is No. 28
On Wednesday, the first day of the international signing period, the White Sox signed four free agents, including Dominican infielder Amado Nunez and catcher Jhoandro Alfaro. According to an industry source, Nunez's deal is worth $900,000 and Alfaro's is worth $750,000.
The club also agreed to terms with Felix Mercedes, 17, a 6-foot-2, 185-pound middle infielder from Moca, Dominican Republic, and Ricky Mota, 16, a 5-foot-11, 170-pound shortstop from Nigua, D.R. Both Mercedes and Mota bat right-handed.
"I am very excited about the potential of these four players and our entire 2014 class," White Sox special assistant to the general manager, international operations Marco Paddy said. "I have gotten to know each of these players and their families very well over the last year, and I have been very impressed by their abilities on the baseball diamond and their character as young men. Their futures are exciting."
Nunez, who ranks 26th on MLB.com's list of the Top 30 International Prospects, has been compared to a teenage Alex Rodriguez. Alfaro, who hails from Colombia, ranks No. 28.
Nunez has a medium-frame build (6-foot-2, 178 pounds) and has been praised for his bat speed and power potential. Scouts like his fluid swing, balanced setup at the plate and ability to hit the ball to all fields.
Nunez has a reputation for possessing an average but accurate arm. He could end up at third base but will likely stay in the middle of the infield for now because of his soft hands, quick feet and range.
Nunez is the son of a colonel in the D.R.'s military and has been praised for his makeup and leadership abilities. He has also played in international tournaments in Mexico and Venezuela.
From Santiago, D.R., Nunez is trained by Aldo Marrero.
Alfaro, the younger brother of Rangers catching prospect Jorge Alfaro, has displayed quick reactions behind the plate and has earned praise for his body control and ability to block balls in the dirt. His arm strength might be his best tool, and he has an advanced approach at the plate.
Alfaro is trained by Rafael Montero in Las Coabas, Venezuela, and he's represented by Abel Guerra.
"Today's signing ceremony is another step in a process that began 2 1/2 years ago when Marco joined our organization with the goal of increasing our profile in Latin America," White Sox general manager Rick Hahn said. "Each of these young men here today is another talented addition to the Chicago White Sox organization."
In accordance with the Collective Bargaining Agreement, each team is allotted a $700,000 base and a bonus pool based on the team's record in 2013 for the international signing period. Chicago's bonus pool total for this year's signing period is $4,273,200.