The Rangers have been a force on the global scene for decades and are once again making their mark as Monday's international signing period begins, coming to terms with one of the top catching prospects in the class and an infielder with one of the game's most familiar last names.
:: 2018 International Signing Period ::
According to industry sources, the Rangers have agreed to a $2 million deal with catcher Jose Rodriguez of Venezuela, ranked No. 21 on MLB.com's Top 30 International Prospects list and shortstop Luisangel Acuna, the younger brother of Atlanta phenom Ronald Acuna Jr., for $425,000.
The Rangers did not confirm the deals.
When considering Rodriguez, picture a young Brian McCann. Rodriguez could be the most advanced hitter from Venezuela in this year's class and he continues to improve on both sides of the ball. The teenager has all of the ingredients to become an average catcher in the future.
As for Acuna, he might end up at second base because of his size and overall skill set. He is best known for offense and he has the potential to be an average-or-better hitter. He could also develop into a decent runner with proper instruction. Luisangel's older brother, Ronald Jr., signed with the Braves in 2014 for $100,000, and their father, Ronald Acuna Sr., signed with the Mets for $15,000 in 1997.
According to the rules established by the Collective Bargaining Agreement, clubs that received a Competitive Balance Pick in Round B of the MLB Draft received a pool of $6,025,400, while clubs that received a Competitive Balance Pick in Round A of the Draft received $5,504,500. All other clubs, including the Rangers, received $4,983,500.
Teams are allowed to trade as much of their international pool money as they would like, but can only acquire 75 percent of a team's initial pool amount. Additionally, signing bonuses of $10,000 or less do not count toward a club's bonus pool, and foreign professional players who are at least 25 and have played in a foreign league for at least six seasons are also exempt.