The Cardinals have come to an agreement on a $1.5MM deal with 18-year-old Dominican righthander Carlos Matias, reports Ben Badler of Baseball America. Matias was one of the best pitchers available on the international market this year.
As Badler explains, Matias is under contract with the team, but he still has to clear some hurdles before receiving his money. MLB must first verify his age and identity, and the U.S. consulate must grant him a visa before the deal can be made official and the bonus paid.
Matias had previously reached an agreement with the Red Sox for $160K, but he was suspended for a year after failing an MLB investigation. The suspension may turn out to be a blessing in disguise, because the righty added velocity to his fastball during the layoff and now routinely sits at 97-99 mph, which has drastically improved his stock.
ESPN's Jorge Arangure reported in March that both the Yankees and Diamondbacks had interest in Matias.