Rangers Sign Dominican Lefty Francis Cespedes

Ben Badler of Baseball America reports that the Rangers squeezed in one final signing before the 2012-13 international signing period ended, inking Dominican left-hander Francis Cespedes for a bonus of $750K. Cespedes' bonus will count against last year's $2.9MM bonus pool as opposed to this year's, as the agreement was in place prior to June 15.

Cespedes' signing is still contingent on Major League Baseball's investigation into his age and identity, according to Badler, who offers the following take on the 18-year-old left-hander:

"[Cespedes] has a lanky, long-armed frame at around 6-foot-4, 195 pounds with the physical projection to easily add at least 25 pounds and build on his low-90s fastball, with a curveball and a changeup rounding out his arenal."

International free agency is in a "closed" state until July 2. Badler reported back in April that the Rangers will have just over $1.9MM to spend in international free agency for the 2013-14 period, so signing Cespedes just under the wire is certainly significant for GM Jon Daniels and his staff, as his bonus represents nearly 40 percent of that pool.


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