CLEVELAND, OH - The Cleveland Guardians today signed 15 international amateur free agents for the 2021-2022 signing period.
Among the club’s signings, outfielder Jaison Chourio and catcher Victor Izturis headlined the group and rank among the top players in Latin America, slotting in at No. 20 and No. 40 per _MLB.com_’s Top 50 International Prospect Ranking, respectively.
Announced by Senior Vice President of Scouting, Paul Gillispie, and Director of International Scouting, Richard Conway, the club’s international signing class includes nine players from Venezuela, five from the Dominican Republic and one from Panama.
“We’re incredibly excited to welcome these players to our organization and equally eager to begin partnering with them as they embark on their professional careers,” said Gillispie, who leads the club’s amateur and international scouting efforts. “The opening of the signing period is a special day for these players, their families and trainers. It’s also a moment to recognize the diligent work of so many people across the organization, especially our scouting staff members, who have gotten to know these players well, both on- and off-the-field.”
From MLB.com on Chourio:
Chourio, a switch-hitting outfielder from Venezuela, will sign as a center fielder, and that’s where he is going to stay for the foreseeable future. There’s a thought that the lean and wiry teen is too dynamic and athletic to play another position. Chourio prosjects to be an above-average runner and have a plus arm. He takes efficient routes in the outfield and gets good jumps on balls hit into the gaps. At the plate, he continues to develop, and like many prospects his age, he is working on his plate discipline and pitch recognition. Overall, he’s a solid blend of tools and projection. Baseball is in the family. Chourio’s older brother Jackson Chourio, a shortstop, signed with the Brewers during the previous international signing period. Jaison is represented by Cesar Suarez, a member of MLB’s Trainer Partnership Program.
From MLB.com on Izturis:
The nephew of former Major League infielders Cesar and Maicer Izturis, Victor also trains at their academy. The recipient of Big League instruction, it’s no surprise Victor is advanced for his age and has a high baseball IQ. At the plate, the teenage catcher shows a solid approach and superior instincts in the batter’s box. His barrel awareness is especially noteworthy and as well as his recognition of the pitches he can hit in the strike zone. He’s a contact hitter with some pop. On defense, he shows soft hands and developing arm strength with a chance to be an overall above-average catcher in the future. Just a tad taller than his Big League uncles were at the same age, Victor might also be a touch stronger. He has more of a compact body build than the other Izturises, but he does have one thing in common: He has a chance to star at a premium position.
Here are all the Guardians' signings: