Blue Jays: Recapping the offseason’s international signings

BALTIMORE, MD - APRIL 23: Baseballs sit in the grass before the start of the New York Yankees and Baltimore Orioles game at Oriole Park at Camden Yards on April 23, 2011 in Baltimore, Maryland. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
BALTIMORE, MD - APRIL 23: Baseballs sit in the grass before the start of the New York Yankees and Baltimore Orioles game at Oriole Park at Camden Yards on April 23, 2011 in Baltimore, Maryland. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images) /
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Recapping the Blue Jays’ international signings from the 2018 offseason, including a host of young pitchers from various Central American countries.

The Blue Jays made a ton of international signings this offseason, inking a plethora of young arms to minor-league deals ahead of the 2019 season. Having a strong presence in the international market is crucial to succeeding long-term in today’s baseball climate, and the Blue Jays are among the leaders in that department.

Though there isn’t much public information available about these young pitchers, here is a short recap of the names that’ll be joining the minor-league system in 2019:

Note: All information is taken directly from MLB.com’s transactions page; per Baseball America, no signing bonuses for Venezuelan players were able to be published.

RHP Fernando Chacon

Age: 17

Born: Valencia, Venezuela

Date Signed: October 3, 2018

RHP Joneivy Polonia

Age: 16

Born: Bonao, Dominican Republic

Date Signed: October 13, 2018

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RHP Winder Garcia

Age: 17

Born: Caracas, Venezuela

Date Signed: October 30, 2018

RHP Edgar Castro

Age: 17

Born: San Felipe, Venezuela

Date Signed: October 30, 2018

LHP Alcindo Pontes

Age: 16

Born: La Guaira, Venezuela

Date Signed: October 30, 2018

RHP Pedro Acosta

Age: 17

Born: Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic

Date Signed: November 21, 2018

RHP William Gaston

Age: 22

Born: La Habana, Cuba

Date Signed: December 20, 2018

Additional Information: More information on Gaston (cousin of Tampa Bay Rays prospect Sandy Gaston) can be found here.

LHP Junior A. Guzman

Age: 19

Born: Caracas, Venezuela

Date Signed: December 20, 2018

RHP Francis Mercedes

Age: 19

Born: Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic

Date Signed: March 5, 2019

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Signed before conclusion of the 2018 season (date signed in brackets): LHP Wilgenis Alvarado, C Javier D’Orazio, DH Willfrann Astudillo, C Gary David, LHP Yaifer Perdomo, RHP Jorman Gonzalez, IF Gustavo Gutierrez, OF Abner King, IF Leonal Callez, IF Adrian Montero (July 2, 2018), CF Juan Pizarro (July 3), LHP Argeny Ortiz (Sept. 13) and RHP Jose Quintana (Sept. 17)