Now Commenting On:

{"event":["prospect" ] }

Padres sign Venezuelan catcher Rodriguez, others

Solid defender ranks No. 30 on MLB.com's Top 30 International Prospects

Padres sign Venezuelan catcher Rodriguez, others play video for Padres sign Venezuelan catcher Rodriguez, others

The Padres opened their new academy in the Dominican Republic in 2008, and they continue to fill it with prospects. On Wednesday, the club announced four international signings, including catcher Ricardo Rodriguez from Venezuela.

Rodriguez, who ranks No. 30 on MLB.com's Top 30 International Prospects list, impressed scouts with his prowess behind the plate and power potential in the batter's box.

He might not be the fastest runner on the bases, but Rodriguez makes up for the shortcoming with a solid arm and reliable defense. He's also known for his poise, intelligence and baseball IQ.

Rodriguez projects to be an average hitter, but he does everything well -- a big reason scouts believe he should be considered among the top catchers on the prospect market.

The 5-foot-10, 180-pound teen also has international tournament experience on his resume as a member of Venezuela's Under-15 National Team. He trains on Margarita Island, Venezuela, with Caro Barrios and Lenin Rodriguez.

The Padres also announced the signings of 16-year-old shortstop Elvis Sabala, 17-year-old left-hander Eduardo Solano and 16-year-old right-hander Pedro Beltran -- all from the Dominican Republic.

In accordance to the Collective Bargaining Agreement, each team is allotted a $700,000 base and a bonus pool based on the team's record in 2013 for the international signing period, which started Wednesday. San Diego's bonus pool total for this year's signing period is $2,531,200.

Jesse Sanchez is a national reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @JesseSanchezMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

{"event":["prospect" ] }
{"event":["prospect" ] }
Boys and Girls Club of America

©2014 MLBAM, LP. All rights reserved.

The following are trademarks or service marks of Major League Baseball entities and may be used only with permission of Major League Baseball Properties, Inc. or the relevant Major League Baseball entity: Major League, Major League Baseball, MLB, the silhouetted batter logo, World Series, National League, American League, Division Series, League Championship Series, All-Star Game, and the names, nicknames, logos, uniform designs, color combinations, and slogans designating the Major League Baseball clubs and entities, and their respective mascots, events and exhibitions. Use of the Website signifies your agreement to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy (updated May 24, 2013).

View MLB.com in English | En Español