The Texas Rangers, who made it to the World Series last season after spending years under the iron fist of a moron owner before being purchased by Nolan Ryan and other guys who don’t matter, are currently tied for first in the American League West with the Anaheim Angels of Anaheim, California-Los Angeles Berkeley South Angels, but they’re already thinking ahead to the future. Far ahead, actually. On Saturday, the Rangers signed 16-year old Dominican Republic prospect Nomar Mazara and gave him a record $5 million signing bonus. Hooray Capitalism!
“It’s fair to say we planned to be active in the international amateur market this year, consistent with our goal of adding the best talent possible in all arenas,” [Rangers GM Jon] Daniels said. “Our scouts have put in a lot of work to put us in position to do just that, and ownership continues to support us. Can’t say enough about both groups’ commitment to seeing us win.” (ESPN)
Of course we can joke about the Rangers showing a commitment to winning by signing a 16-year old kid who probably won’t be ready for at least 5 years, but Mazara is supposedly 6-foot-5 and mashes the ball from the left side of the plate. So if my Dominican-to-American Age Calculator app on my iPad is correct, he’s actually 51.
The Oakland Athletics signed Dominican pitcher Michael Ynoa with a then-record $4.25 million bonus in 2008, and the 19-year old phenom is currently recovering from Tommy John surgery that he required after throwing nine whole innings in the Arizona League. But I’m sure that Mazara will be fine.