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Rays sign 16-year-old Venezuelan pitcher Francisco Sanchez

Rays sign 16-year-old Venezuelan pitcher Francisco Sanchez Photo: Phelan M. Ebenhack/AP

The Tampa Bay Rays signed 16-year-old Venezuelan pitcher Francisco Sanchez to a $675,000 contract, Baseball America's Ben Badler reports.

Sanchez is a 6'1", 180-pound left-handed pitcher. Teams are allowed to sign prospects once they turn 16 years old.

More: Mets sign 16-year-old prospect Kenny Hernandez for $1 million

Entering the 2014 season, the Rays had the 26th-best farm system in MLB, according to Baseball Prospectus. In July, the Rays signed No. 1 international prospect Adrian Rondon, a shortstop, for $2.95 million.

The Rays are 61-63 entering play Monday, 10 games behind the Baltimore Orioles in the American League East. They are 6.5 games behind the Seattle Mariners for the final Wild Card spot.

More: Rays owner doesn't regret trading David Price

The strong arm tactics of 'MLB Secret Police'

On Wednesday's SI Now, CIR senior investigative reporter Lance Williams discusses the harsh investigative procedures the "MLB Secret Police" used to track down sports handicapper Kris Barr.

- Paul Palladino

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