MLB's Early Winners and Losers of 2014 International Free Agency

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MLB's Early Winners and Losers of 2014 International Free Agency
USA TODAY Sports

The first day of the 2014-15 international signing period officially is in the books.

While most teams played by the rules and stayed within their allotted bonus pools, the New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox set a new precedent by opting to ignore spending limitations (at the cost of a future penalty) in order to sign many of the top-ranked prospects in this year’s class.

Based on the players they landed Wednesday, it’s hard to criticize either team for having the means to exploit a loophole in the current collective bargaining agreement. At the same time, there also were plenty of teams that landed promising young players without exceeding their bonus pools.

While the Yankees and Red Sox both enjoyed a rewarding start to the current international signing period, there were several teams that made lackluster signings Wednesday as others were kept off the board completely.

That said, it simply isn’t fair for me to declare teams as either “winners” or “losers” one day into the signing period; remember, we’re talking about 15- and 16-year-old kids who have minimal experience and will need numerous seasons to develop in the minor leagues, if they’re even so lucky to reach a stateside level. However, that doesn’t mean teams’ international strategies aren’t worth analyzing.

Here are the early “winners” and “losers” of the 2014-15 international signing period.

 

*All bonus pool and signing information is courtesy of either Ben Badler of Baseball America, MLB" target="_blank">Jesse Sanchez of MLB.com or MLB Trade Rumors.
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