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.
John was born in Kearny, NJ, hometown of the 2B for the Pirates 1909 World Championship team, Dots Miller. In fact they have some of the same relatives in common, so it was only natural for him to become a lifelong Pirates fan. Before joining Pirates Prospects in July 2010, John had written numerous articles on the history of baseball while also releasing his own book and co-authoring another on the history of the game. He writes a weekly article on Pirates history for the site, has already interviewed many of the current minor leaguers with many more on the way and follows the foreign minor league teams very closely for the site. John also provides in person game reports of the West Virginia Power and Altoona Curve.