I mean, your guess is as good as mine when it comes to trying to project what 16-year-old kids will do eventually in professional baseball. But hey, the people who do all the work scouting these young kids consider the Cubs favorites to sign three of the top-30 international prospects when the signing period opens up in July.
Ronnier Quintero is ranked sixth in the prospect list and he’s the top-rated catcher too.
Quintero is the top catcher in the 2019 class and one of the best prospects from Venezuela this year. For starters, he’s a left-handed hitter with easy power and lots of upside offensively. He has a polished approach at the plate and has a chance to hit for average. What’s more, Quintero has the potential to establish himself as a middle-of-the-lineup type of bat and as one of the best run-producing catchers on the international market in recent years.
A quick breakdown on Kevin Made, ranked 11th.
And finally another catcher Brayan Altuve, who some scouts say remind them of Willson Contreras.
He’s lean, muscular and boasts a strong athletic body. He’s not a burner on the bases, but he still runs the timed 60-yard run in 6.7-6.8 seconds, which is notable speed for a catcher.
There’s some pop to his bat and he has a reputation for hitting line drives to all fields. He has shown good bat speed along with some home run power. Both are expected to increase as he grows and develops more strength. For now, his offensive game is ahead of his defense.
He’ll eventually have to harness some of his aggressiveness and athleticism, but what makes him so fun to watch is how well he moves behind the plate. That said, he flashes above-average arm strength, good range and overall adequate defensive actions. Like most catchers his age, he’s still working on his receiving skills and calling games. He’s going to stay behind the plate despite displaying the type of athleticism and overall abilities that could lead to a position change.
So, the 6th, 11th and 30th ranked international free agent prospects are expected to sign with the Cubs.