2025 MLB International Prospects Preview: 12 Players To Watch


The Top 100 has a heavy international presence.

Three of the top 10 prospects in baseball were international signings, with 28 of the Top 100 signing from Latin America. Rays third baseman Junior Caminero is the most notable low-dollar international signing on the list, but it’s full of international players who signed for at least $1 million. That includes players with big league experience like Brewers outfielder Jackson Chourio or Yankees outfielder Jasson Dominguez, down to prospects in the lower levels with Mariners outfielder Lazaro Montes, Cubs shortstop Jefferson Rojas, Guardians outfielder Jaison Chourio and Phillies shortstop Starlyn Caba.

When the next international signing period opens on Jan. 15, 2025, teams will get another opportunity to add high-end international signings to their farm system. These are 12 big international prospects to watch for the 2025 class who look to be in line for some of the biggest bonuses in the class, with video, scouting reports and the team set to sign each player once Jan. 15 arrives.

Elian Peña, SS, Dominican Republic

Team: Mets

Peña is expected to sign the biggest bonus in the class, likely in the $5 million area, which would be nearly all of the $6,261,600 in the Mets’ bonus pool. Peña is a polished lefthanded hitter and one of the most dangerous offensive threats in the class. It’s a sweet lefty swing that’s compact and stays through the hitting zone a long time, with Peña showing the ability to manipulate the barrel to consistently square up pitches for hard contact throughout the strike zone. Against live pitching, he has shown a discerning approach for his age, taking his walks and getting a good pitch to hit, with plus raw power. A tick above-average runner underway with a plus arm, Peña is an offensive-minded infielder who some scouts thought would fit best at third base, though others think he has a chance to stick at shortstop. 

Andrew Salas, SS, Venezuela

Team: Marlins

Salas is following in the footsteps of his brothers, Padres catcher Ethan Salas and Twins infielder Jose Salas, as players born and raised in Florida signing as international free agents out of Venezuela. Andrew is a switch-hitting shortstop whose baseball acumen is evident in his instincts and ability to slow the game down on both sides of the ball. He has a good eye for the strike zone, with a slightly more advanced swing from the left side, where he has good balance and goes with where the ball is pitched, showing the ability to backspin balls to the opposite-field gap in a hit-over-power profile. Salas doesn’t have the same quick-twitch, explosive actions as some of the other top shortstops in the class, but he’s a fundamentally sound defender with a good internal clock. He’s a tick above-average runner who has a good chance to stick at the position, where’s a fluid mover with soft hands and a solid-average arm that could tick up another grade as he gets stronger. 

Josuar Gonzalez, SS, Dominican Republic

Team: Giants

Gonzalez is a 5-foot-10 shortstop with outstanding quickness, athleticism and explosiveness that’s evident at shortstop, in the batter’s box and on the basepaths. He’s a 70 runner with a 70 arm who shows the hands, range and body control to become a plus defender at shortstop. It’s easy to see the quickness Gonzalez has with his feet at shortstop and with his hands when he’s in the batter’s box. He’s able to fire his hands to whistle the barrel through the zone with good bat speed, generating over-the-fence power in BP from both sides of the plate. Gonzalez will get his weight shifted on his front side early at times against live pitching, but at his best he has shown the potential to be a hitter who can bat toward the top of the lineup and should be a high stolen base threat. 

Cris Rodriguez, OF, Dominican Republic

Team: Tigers

Rodriguez stood out early in the scouting process for his physicality and power potential. He’s a strong, athletic hitter with fast bat speed and can crush balls in batting practice with some of the better raw power in the class. Rodriguez has long limbs that gave some scouts concerns about the potential for his swing to get long, with a power-over-hit profile, but if he’s able to make enough contact, there’s upside to be a 25-plus home run threat. He has the speed and athleticism to give him a chance to stay in center field, though given how large he could get he could end up in corner depending on his physical development. 

Diego Tornes, OF, Cuba

Team: Braves

When Tornes arrived in the Dominican Republic from Cuba, he drew a lot of attention from scouts for his offensive game. He’s a strong but lean 6-foot-2 switch-hitter with a mix of both hitting ability and power. He tracks pitches well, recognizes spin and has a knack for being on time. His barrel can get in and out of the zone quickly, but it’s an accurate swing with fast bat speed that has led to home run production in games with consistent hard contact. While scouts early in the evaluation process largely viewed Tornes as a likely left fielder who could ultimately end up at first base, his speed and defense have made significant progress over the past year. He now has a chance to at least start his career in center field after getting faster to become a tick above-average runner with an average arm. Tornes turns 16 in July, so he’s also one of the younger players in the class.

Cristopher Polanco, SS, Dominican Republic

Team: Blue Jays

Polanco is one of the most advanced hitters in the class. He’s a lefthanded hitter who consistently puts together quality at-bats with a mature approach for his age. Polanco’s swing is compact, gets on plane early and he has the bat control that enables him to make contact at a high clip. It’s a low swing-and-miss rate with occasional home run pop, with the strength projection in his frame for more of his doubles to start stretching over the fence in the coming years. Polanco’s offensive track record stands out, but he’s also a solid defender at shortstop. An average runner, Polanco doesn’t have the same raw tools or explosiveness as some of the other top shortstops for this year, but he has good actions and body control, with improved footwork over the past year. His arm is a tick below-average but looks like it should jump another grade given his arm action, arm speed and strength projection.

Manny Cedeño, SS, Dominican Republic

Team: Yankees

With a clean, direct swing from the right side, Cedeño is one of the better hitters in the class. It’s a simple, repeatable stroke that produces hard line drives throughout the field. He has the raw power to drive the ball out of the park when he’s looking to turn on the ball for damage, with a chance to grow into above-average power. Cedeño has a strong lower half and should get an opportunity to develop at shortstop, though some scouts think he could end up at second or third base. Cedeño’s offensive game stands out the most, but he moves well underway with above-average speed and has an above-average arm that would fit anywhere in the infield. 

Warren Calcaño, SS, Dominican Republic

Team: Royals

Calcaño has long stood out for his defense, growing a few inches during the scouting process to a wiry, high-waist 6-foot-2 shortstop. An average runner, Calcaño has quick hands, fluid actions and a plus arm, showing the ingredients to become a plus defensive shortstop. Defense has been the calling card for Calcaño, an instinctive player and a switch-hitter who has shown good bat-to-ball skills for his age. It’s mostly gap power now, though that could tick up once he layers more strength on to his slim build. 

Yorger Bautista, OF, Venezuela

Team: Mariners

Bautista stood out early in the scouting process because of his offensive performance. He has a lot of game experience and consistently performed well against live pitching, albeit with an unconventional swing where he would bar his arm with a lot of moving parts. It’s still not a classic pure lefty swing, but he has been able to hit and drive the ball for damage in games, with tools that have spiked significantly over the past year. He generates high-end bat speed for his age, producing at least plus raw power. Bautista had good actions in the outfield before but was a below-average runner. Now he’s a plus-plus runner underway with a plus arm, giving him the tools to be a power/speed threat at a premium position in center field. 

Gabriel Davalillo, C, Venezuela

Team: Angels

Venezuela is the go-to source of catching talent in the international market. Of the top 20 bonuses for catchers signed so far this year, 18 of them went to players from Venezuela. The 2025 class should be more of the same, with Davalillo likely to get the top bonus for any catcher next year. It’s not a standout, high physical upside frame, but he combines a low swing-and-miss rate with hard contact and a good chance to stick behind the plate. It’s a stronger, more physically mature build with a thick lower half from a righthanded hitter who shows good bat-to-ball skills against live pitching from a short swing with a good approach for his age. He’s already driving the ball over the fence to his pull side and could have average power. Davalillo’s offensive game sticks out the most, but he’s a solid catch-and-throw player as well with a solid-average arm. 

Yohan De Los Santos, SS, Dominican Republic

Team: Pirates

The Pirates know De los Santos well. He’s the younger brother of shortstop Yordany De los Santos, who received Pittsburgh’s top bonus in 2022 when he signed for $1.2 million. While Yordany is a righthanded hitter, Yohan hits from the left side with a short swing and a good approach for his age, showing the ability to go with where the ball is pitched and use the whole field with gap power. While he has some things to iron out defensively at shortstop, he’s a plus runner with the athleticism that should enable him to play somewhere in the middle of the field, whether it’s in the infield or in center field.

Wilfry De La Cruz, SS, Dominican Republic

Team: Cubs

With a slender 6-foot-3 frame, De la Cruz impressed scouts with his combination of hitting ability and room to add strength early in the scouting process. He’s a selective hitter who makes good swing decisions, allowing him to control the strike zone and get on base at a high clip in games. He’s a switch-hitter with good bat-to-ball skills and the potential to grow into above-average power, with some of that power starting to trend up as he’s begun to layer on more strength to a still lean build. De la Cruz is an offensive-minded shortstop who some scouts think could slide over to third base if he outgrows the position. He doesn’t have the explosive first-step quickness some scouts prefer at shortstop, but he’s a reliable defender there for now with good reads and a strong arm.

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