After we heard about the two high profile signings from yesterday, shortstop Adrian Valerio and outfielder Edinson Lantigua, the Pirates also announced the signings of seven more players today. These players are all slightly older players, eligible to sign prior to this July 2nd signing period. They are shortstop Luis Perez, second baseman Raul Siri, lefty pitcher Christian Mota and right-handers Ramon Garcia, Junior Lopez, Julian Villamar and Yunior Montero.
The last player on that list, Yunior Montero, might be a name familiar to Pirates fans. He was originally signed in 2009 for $45,000, but failed the MLB background check and had his contract voided. He had to sit out the season and then the next year he showed improvements, forcing the Pirates into a bidding war. That time they paid $185,000 to sign him. Montero made one start in the Dominican Summer League in 2011 and threw five shutout innings, allowing two hits and a walk, while striking out four batters.
After that one start, MLB then contacted the Pirates after more problems came up with his second background check. He has been in limbo ever since. Montero has been with the team in their Dominican facility, but ineligible to play until now. The scouting report from 2010 had him hitting 94 MPH, with a decent slider.
We will have additional information on these players within the next couple days.