The trainer of a 16-year-old Dominican shortstop says that the New York Yankees agreed in October 2013 to sign the prospect for a $2.1 million signing bonus, then backed out of the deal in June, according to Baseball America. The Yankees say that an agreement was never in place.
According to his trainer, the prospect, Christopher Torres, had verbally agreed to the deal in October with the understanding that he would sign on July 2, the day that international players become eligible to sign - an agreement that Yankees vice president Mark Newman denied.
“It’s really simple,” Newman said. “We scouted the guy, we worked him out, we talked to the agent, we talked to the family. We did not make an offer. We did not sign the guy and we did not have an offer. We talked about various levels of interest on our part and their part, but there was never any offer.”
Torres' trainer, Orlando Mazara, said that the Yankees told Torres in June that they would not sign him.
“The kid was crying,” Mazara said. “His family, they were upset because they broke their word. They broke everything.”
Torres’ camp made a complaint to the commissioner’s office. As a result, MLB met with Yankees officials. Newman declined to comment on what occurred at those discussions.
- Molly Geary