The Mariners confirmed agreements Tuesday with four 16-year-old players in the international signing period and a fifth appears on the way.
The four confirmed signings:
***Dominican outfielder Julio Rodriguez, who rated as the No. 6 player in the international market, according to Baseball America. He reportedly received $1.75 million of the Mariners’ $4.75 million bonus pool.
"Rodriguez has a power bat along with a good feel for hitting," said Tim Kissner, the Mariners’ director of international scouting.
"We’ve been impressed all along with his raw power potential and his ability to make contact in games, and we think the combination of both could lead to a power-hitting middle of the lineup type of player."
***Venezuelan shortstop Juan Querecuto, who is ranked as the No. 21 international prospect.
"Querecuto is an advance-minded shortstop that plays above his years," Kissner said. "He is advanced for a 16-year-old with good tools across the board.
"He has natural abilities that come from playing baseball with his brother and father who both have professional playing experience."
***Venezuelan left-handed pitcher Brayan Perez.
"Perez is extremely projectable with a clean delivery and loose arm action," Kissner said. "We really like his feel for the breaking pitch and like the upside that he provides from the left side."
***Dominican right-handed pitcher Yeuri Tatiz.
"Tatiz is an athletic player with a clean arm action and a good feel for his secondary pitches," Kissner said. "With his ability to repeat his delivery and throw strikes, we profile him a starter who will continue to mature physically as he gets into our system."
The Mariners also have an agreement in place with Dominican right-hander Joseph Hernandez, according to Baseball America.
The international signing period began Sunday and covers foreign-born players who are not eligible for the MLB Draft.
A player must be 16 years old when he signs and turn 17 either by Sept. 1 or by the conclusion of his first pro season (which is later). All clubs are assigned a spending limit and face escalating penalties for exceeding it.
The odds of the Mariners raising some sort of championship banner this season still aren’t good — but they’re getting better.
The folks of www.Bovada.lv, the online gaming service, released updated odds Tuesday that show the Mariners are still a 66/1 shot to win the World Series over their previous posting on June 1.
But the Mariners are now a 24/1 pick to win the American League pennant, up from 33/1. They are also now a 25/1 shot to catch Houston for the AL West crown; they were 50/1 on June 1.
Bob Dutton: @TNT_Mariners