Indians sign 16-year-old brother of Ramirez

Baez is a switch-hitter and plays shortstop

August 31st, 2018

CLEVELAND -- was an unknown when he arrived at the Indians' academy in the Dominican Republic for a tryout nine years ago. He was considered too small and too old by most evaluators, but Cleveland's scouts saw enough heart in the infielder to extend a modest offer.

The rest, as the saying goes, is history. Ramirez is now one of baseball's premier stars, playing a dynamic third base while slugging home runs at a rapid rate. He has developed into an All-Star and MVP contender. Naturally, the Indians did not want to pass on reeling in another Jose Ramirez.

On Friday, Cleveland signed shortstop prospect Jose Baez Ramirez, the younger brother of the Tribe's third baseman. Standing at his locker inside the Indians' clubhouse prior to Friday's game against the Rays, Ramirez praised the playing ability of his brother, who also hails from Bani, D.R.

"He's a good player," Ramirez said through team interpreter Will Clements. "He's a big kid, and he's going to be strong. He's got a ton of ability to be able to have success in this game. He'll get as far as his bat takes him."

Cleveland's new signee goes by Jose Baez and turned 16 years old on Thursday. He is listed at 5-foot-9 and 146 pounds and -- like his older brother -- switch-hits and throws right-handed. One international evaluator described Baez as having good hands, a good approach at the plate and an athletic build, but noted that he needs to continue to build up his strength.

Ramirez originally signed for $50,000 in November 2009 and never found his way onto any Top 100 prospect rankings. By the fall of '13, though, he was in the Majors at 20 years old and on his way to the makings of a prolific career. Now, Ramirez is locked in on a five-year, $26 million extension that includes club options for the '22 and '23 seasons.

Ramirez is thrilled to know that his brother will be in the same organization.

"I'm super happy that he signed here," Ramirez said. "I know that they're going to treat him really well. We're really like a family here, so I know they're going to treat him well. I'm really happy that he signed here."

Worth noting

• Indians manager Terry Francona noted on Friday that pitcher (10-day DL, stress fracture in right fibula) is scheduled to be re-examined on Saturday. Francona said there will be more information on Bauer's status and the next steps in his comeback following that consultation. Bauer has continued a throwing program, which has already included mound work.

• Lefty (10-day DL, left shoulder impingement) is still in a shutdown period from throwing after receiving a cortisone shot. Francona indicated that the reliever might be cleared to resume throwing by Sunday or Monday.

• Besides signing Baez on Friday, the Indians also reached a deal with infield prospect Henyer Gomez, who is from Loma de Cabrera, D.R. Gomez, 16, switch-hits, throws from the right side and is listed at 5-foot-7 and 145 pounds.

• Reliever (60-day DL) underwent a right elbow arthroscopic debridement on Friday in Dallas. Dr. Keith Meister removed a bone spur as part of the procedure. Goody will miss the remainder of the season, but is expected to be ready for the start of the 2019 campaign.