The Yankees are expected to sign Dominican right-hander Rafael DePaula for about $700K later today, according to Melissa Segura of SI.com (on Twitter). He reappeared on the market a week ago after facing age and identity fraud questions for a year. MLB suspended him in 2009 and he later confessed to using a false identity.
If not for the suspension, DePaula would likely have signed for more, according to Segura. He turns 20 soon, so the Yankees may fast track his path through the minor leagues.
Here's the best scouting report that I could cobble together:
- Low to mid 90s fastball
- Projectible change, slider, and curve
- Good feel for secondary stuff
- Clean, simple, repeatable mechanics
Had DePaula not lost a year of eligibility, it is likely that he would've commanded a seven-figure deal ... and a great deal more hype. His secondary stuff is certainly advanced for a young pitcher, but the lost year of professional development is significant - particularly for a prospect from the D.R., as common sentiment reveals that they are taught from a young age to throw as hard as possible, and little else. Regardless, this is a fine signing by the Yankees, with little risk and a potentially high reward.