By Eduardo A. Encina
The Baltimore Sun
4:27 PM EDT, July 4, 2014
BOSTON — Orioles executive director of international recruiting Fred Ferreira plucked Orioles right-hander Miguel Gonzalez from the Mexican League, signed him to a minor league free-agent deal and saw him blossom into a major league starting pitcher.
Now he hopes another pitcher — ironically, one with the same name — can reach the same heights.
The Orioles have signed pitcher Miguel Gonzalez, an 18-year-old right-hander from the Dominican Republic, to an international free-agent deal.
Gonzalez has a fastball in the 94- to 98-mph range, Ferreira said, and has a strong breaking ball that’s still developing.
The Orioles signed Gonzalez, who likely will begin his pro career either in the Dominican Summer League or the Gulf Coast League, to a $400,000 signing bonus.
The club also signed 16-year-old outfielder Richard Barcendas out of Venezuela to a $100,000 signing bonus. Barcendas is a 6-foot-2, 175-pound center fielder who projects to have a strong power bat and good speed.
The Orioles have yet to develop a homegrown player out of Venezuela. Pitching prospect Eduardo Rodriguez is close, currently pitching at Double-A Bowie.
Barcendas is expected to begin his pro career in the Dominican Summer League.
Ferreira has signed 62 international players who have gone on to the major leagues, most recently Gonzalez and Cuban outfielder Henry Urrutia for the Orioles.
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