According to sources, Pirates Prospects has learned that the Pittsburgh Pirates are front runners to sign catcher Javier Acevedo and center fielder Iverson Allen from Panama. Both players will be part of the 2023 International signing class, as neither has turned 16 years old yet, so they aren’t eligible to sign.
Iverson Allen is the real name of the player, and his father was a national basketball player in Panama, which helps explain the name. The baseball player is a center fielder with tremendous raw tools and a very high ceiling (high enough to dunk). He’s a plus athlete, who still has plenty of progress to make due to his age. They all sign at 16 (or older), but he’s young for the signing class.
Acevedo is a left-handed hitting catcher with skills and upside on both sides of the ball. He has a medium frame and he’s athletic for a catcher. At the plate he has what is described as an easy/smooth swing, with a feel for barreling up pitches.
The only problem here might be a possible 2023 international draft if it goes into effect. If that happens, then these will change to players who the Pirates have interest in drafting, but obviously no guarantees.
UPDATE: A little miscommunication on my part led to me thinking that the 2023 class, as I was told, meant players who would be signing in January of 2023. Turns out that the 2023 class becomes eligible to sign (under the old rules) in July of 2023, even though the signing date has been permanently pushed back to January 15th. I assumed they were signing in January 2023, but didn’t confirm. These players will be able to sign on January 15, 2024.
John started working at Pirates Prospects in 2009, but his connection to the Pittsburgh Pirates started exactly 100 years earlier when Dots Miller debuted for the 1909 World Series champions. John was born in Kearny, NJ, two blocks from the house where Dots Miller grew up. From that hometown hero connection came a love of Pirates history, as well as the sport of baseball.
When he didn't make it as a lefty pitcher with an 80+ MPH fastball and a slider that needed work, John turned to covering the game, eventually focusing in on the prospects side, where his interest was pushed by the big league team being below .500 for so long. John has covered the minors in some form since the 2002 season, and leads the draft and international coverage on Pirates Prospects. He writes daily on Pittsburgh Baseball History, when he's not covering the entire system daily throughout the entire year on Pirates Prospects.
Pirates getting a quick jump on international signings for the coming year. Welcome aboard.
First comes Puberty then Practice…
I don’t see how they can implement an intl draft for the next signing period. It’ll be a mess.
So MLB will probably do it.
Sounds about right.
I agree with everything you said, especially the part where MLB will probably do it.
Hahaha, came in specifically to make this comment…well done.
About his height, would you call him a sixer?
iverson allen. what a name!
I’ll give you 3 guesses who his dad’s favorite Basketball player was.