Baltimore Orioles 2020-21 International Signing Preview
This is part of Ben Badler's 2020-21 international signing day preview. You can find the Orioles 2019 International Signing Class here. You can also find his international big board of 2020 prospects here.
The 2020 international signing class will be the biggest in Orioles' history. That's certainly not saying much, but it's the first time the Orioles are expected to sign some of the top prospects in the class.
Mike Elias took over as general manager in November 2018 and by the time he hired Koby Perez as international scouting director in January 2019, the Orioles were already behind on the 2019 and 2020 classes, given how early many of the high-profile players for those classes were making signing commitments. The Orioles were still able to come away with a group of promising, projectable pitching prospects from Latin America in their 2019 class. With some opportunistic timing, the Orioles now look like they will be able to land two high-profile position prospects in their 2020 class.
One of those prospects the Orioles are expected to land is Maikol Hernandez, a shortstop from Venezuela. Hernandez is a long, lean shortstop at 6-foot-4, 175 pounds, but he has a chance to stay at the position because of his athleticism. He's a plus runner with a strong arm and big power that he generates relatively easily, giving him a chance to develop into a power-speed threat.
The Orioles are also expected to sign Samuel Basallo, the top catching prospect in the Dominican Republic, likely for a bonus in the $1 million to $1.5 million range. Basallo is young for the class—he can't sign until he turns 16 on Aug. 13—and he's big for a catcher at 6-foot-3, 198 pounds. He will have to stay on top of his mobility to remain at catcher, but he has power tools in his arm strength and raw power, with a shorter stroke for a 15-year-old his size from the left side of the plate.
The Orioles are also expected to sign Dominican corner outfielder Wilmer Feliciano for a little under $500,000. He's a 6-foot-2 lefthanded hitter who will need to make more frequent contact but has big raw power.
Dominican catcher Aneudis Mordan, Dominican outfielder Teudis Cortorreal and switch-hitting Dominican shortstop Victor Celedonio are also expected to sign with Baltimore.
Video of Mordan:
Video of Cortorreal: