If there is one area that the Oakland A’s are going to make a splash, it is typically in international free agency. They have landed some of the top international talent over the years, establishing themselves as a force to be reckoned with in Latin America. The hope was that that trend would continue again this year.
Instead, the first day of the international signing period has come and gone with little activity from the A’s. The top 50 international prospects have all signed with the A’s being shut out.
Oakland A’s shut out on top international prospects
While it is known that the A’s are not going to be spending much on the major league roster for 2022, that has not extended to building the farm system. Even though the A’s keep the major league checkbook under lockdown, they have been willing to spend as much as possible to attract top international talent.
That is not the case this year. The A’s were not really considered to be much of a player when it came to the top international prospects and there were not any surprises on Saturday. If they are going to strike gold this year, it will be with a prospect with much less of a pedigree.
That scenario could easily happen. The likes of Salvador Perez and Ronald Acuna Jr. were not highly regarded when they signed, receiving minimal bonuses in comparison. However, they have gone on to impressive major league careers.
Meanwhile, other highly regarded international prospects have not panned out. The A’s just have to look at Lazaro Armenteros to see the risks involved with those players. That does not mean that the A’s should have avoided those top prospects this season especially considering the overall state of their farm system. And maybe one of the lesser known, or regarded, prospects they do end up signing will work out. It is just a disappointing start to the international free agency period.
The Oakland A’s did not sign any of the top 50 international prospects. It is a disappointing start to the international signing period.