TORONTO - The Orioles announced today they have agreed to terms with international player Isaac Bellony, a 16-year-old switch-hitting outfielder out of the Dominican Republic who was born in the U.S. Virgin Islands.
This is the first announcement by the club of any international amateur signing since the new signing period went into effect on July 2.
“Bellony is a young, switch-hitting center fielder with power, speed and a strong arm, who was recruited by several clubs. We look forward to helping him develop into a major leaguer,” Orioles executive vice president Dan Duquette said in a team-issued statement.
According to a source, Bellony signed for $220,000.
Earlier it was reported that the Orioles have agreed to terms with 16-year-old Dominican shortstop Moises Ramirez, but the club has not announced that signing yet.
Meanwhile, the newest Oriole is 28-year-old outfielder John Andreoli. He joined the club here today, two days after they claimed him off waivers from Seattle. That came one day after Seattle had designated him for assignment.
Andreoli has been waiting for a chance in the majors for a long time. Drafted in Round 17 by the Chicago Cubs in 2011, he has played four straight years in the Triple-A Pacific Coast League.
After the Orioles acquired him Saturday, he was heading east to join Triple-A Norfolk when he got a call to join the Orioles.
“Yeah. I had a layover in Denver and got a text to call our farm director right away,” he said. “He told me the news, so I was just really excited and it’s going to be an awesome opportunity. So just excited to be here.”
Andreoli batted .287/.397/.401 with 18 doubles, five triples, three home runs, 36 RBIs and 19 stolen bases in 89 games with Triple-A Tacoma. He got three brief call-ups to the Mariners and went 1-for-5 in three games.
He was added to the roster today in a series of moves that included Mark Trumbo being placed on the 10-day disabled with right knee inflammation and Adam Jones rejoining the team after being reinstated off the bereavement list.
Andreoli is considered a solid defender with speed and he’s stolen 247 bases in 772 minor league games. He has more career triples (44) than homers (37). He stole 43 bases for Triple-A Iowa in 2016.
“I can play all three outfield spots,” he said. “I can run the bases effectively and I feel like I put pressure on defenses. If I can get on base and put pressure on defenses there, too, and help the team score a lot of runs. Whatever role I can have here to help this team win, I’m going to embrace it and do my job.”
Andreoli, who will wear No. 64, was having a solid 2018 season for Tacoma and hopes he can continue that with his new team.
“Just sticking with my routine and my approach, knowing the type of player I am,” he said of his solid 2018 season. “Get on base and let the guys in the middle of the order do damage when I’m on base so we can score a lot of runs and win games. Wherever I am that day in the outfield, just do my job, play the game the right way and when the ball comes your way, make plays.”