4. Adrian Rondon
Adrian Rondon was acquired via the International Free Agency in 2014 by the Rays out of the Dominican Republic. The Rays gave him up close to $3 million in bonus money to get the highly-touted international man of multi-dimensional talents.
Rondon was born just one day after Goldberg defeated Hollywood Hogan for the WCW title on Nitro in Atlanta, Georgia.
That means the Rays signed him at 16-years-old. His Major League ETA was set for late 2018.
Baseball Prospectus wasn’t shy about this kid’s ability. They gave his “overall future potential” rating a “7; perennial all-star.”
It’s hard to project a 16-year-old kid, but it was beginning to look like he’d develop into a strong defender up the middle, a solid contact hitter, and progressive power.
Baseball America had Rondon rated as the top prospect in the 2014 international class.
In 2015, Rondon got his first taste of professional ball in the Gulf Coast League where the 16-year-old hit .166/.256/.234. He was only 16…
The following season he slashed .249/.301/.430. That’s a marked improvement over the previous season, and he’s still just seventeen.
He regressed the next season by slashing .221/.286/.330.
In his age-19 season of 2018, he still found himself bouncing between Low-A Bowling Green and Hudson Valley. Things got even worse as he played in 93 games slashing .182/.242/.287.
Prior to last season, the Rays cut their losses, proving what an inexact science scouting prospect can be.
Rondon is currently signed with the Angels where he spent last season between Rookie and Class-A.
He was finally able to post solid numbers but has not yet reached Double-A. On the flip side, the kid is about to enter his age-21 season. He’s still got a chance, so we’ll reserve judgment.