Rays Sign Dayron Varona
The Rays have signed Cuban outfielder Dayron Varona to a minor-league deal, according to Baseball America‘s Ben Badler.
Varona, who is still in the process of acquiring a visa, is regarded as a good athlete. Badler described Varona as an above-average runner with “the ability to play all three outfield spots.” Keith Law, meanwhile, saw Varona in January and threw a plus grade on the outfielder’s arm, while conceding it could be closer to plus-plus territory.
The knock on Varona is his right-handed bat. There’s no indication he can (or will) hit big-league pitching well enough to profile as a starter. Still, provided Varona’s other tools are as good as advertised, his offensive production won’t need to reach lofty heights for him to serve as a speed-and-D spare outfielder.
Because Varona is 27 years old, his signing bonus (yet to be disclosed) will not count toward the Rays’ overage on their international spending limit.