The Red Sox are expected to sign Dominican outfielder Vladimir Asencio when the 2024 international signing period opens on January 15, according to Baseball America’s Ben Badler. Asencio is slated to receive the 39th-highest bonus this year, per Badler. The 17-year-old is currently regarded by MLB Pipeline as the No. 33 prospect in the 2024 international signing class.
Like top Red Sox prospect and fellow outfielder Miguel Bleis, who signed with Boston three years ago, Asencio also trained with Mejia Top 10 baseball academy in Santo Domingo.
According to his Baseball America scouting report, Asencio “is one of the most difficult hitters to strike out from the Dominican Republic in this year’s class. He has excellent hand-eye coordination with the bat control to consistently put the ball in play. Asencio isn’t that big, with even scouts who were high on him still uncertain about how much power he will end up developing.”
In similar fashion, MLB Pipeline describes the right-handed hitter as follows: “Armed with a sound bat path and slight uppercut stroke, Asencio has a knack for utilizing the opposing field. He has made consistent hard contact during games, and evaluators believe he will grow into more power as he matures. He remains very much hit-over-power at this stage of his development, but he does sport some sneaky pop.”
Listed at 5-foot-10 and somewhere between 160-170 pounds, Asencio “boasts loads of physical projection,” per MLB Pipeline. The outlet notes that “athleticism is the first thing that jumps off the page with Asencio. Although he has just average arm strength from center field with fair footwork and range, his speed should enable him to maximize his tools defensively. That same quickness figures to play to his advantage on the basepaths with his medium-sized frame.”
Baseball America adds that while Asencio “isn’t a burner,” he runs “well enough to get a chance to play center field.” To that end, MLB Pipeline grades all of Asencio’s tools, including a 55-hit, as a 50 or better on the 20-80 scouting scale.
While it is not yet known how much money he will be receiving from the Red Sox, it should be noted that the 39th-ranked player on Badler’s 2023 bonus board, Anibal Salas, signed with the Detroit Tigers for $1 million last year. That same dollar figure would account for roughly 18.9 percent of Boston’s $5.284 million bonus pool for the 2024 international signing period, which runs through December 15.
With all that being said, Asencio — who does not turn 18 until December — will presumably make his professional debut in the Dominican Summer League alongside other members of the Sox’ 2024 international signing class at some point later this year.