More than two months after initially agreeing on a deal with a $3.15 million bonus, Miguel Sano is officially a member of the Minnesota Twins organization.
Sano’s application for a work visa was approved Friday by the U.S. Consulate in the Dominican Republic.
Obtaining the visa was the final hurdle that needed to be cleared to finalize the deal.
Sano’s deal included a $3.15 million bonus, which was the largest awarded to an international player this summer and the largest ever for a Latin American positional prospect.
It is also the second-largest Latin American signing bonus ever, behind fellow Dominican Michael Ynoa, who signed a $4.25 million deal with Oakland last year.
Sano, 16, was the jewel of this year’s international signing crop and for very good reason. He is a five-tool prospect with a very high ceiling.
Sano is a 6-foot-3 slugging shortstop from the Dominican Republic who has been compared to everyone from Hanley Ramirez to Alex Rodriguez.
Scouting reports say he has great raw power to all fields and only figures to get better and stronger as he fills out. Although currently a strong-armed shortstop, most scouts assume he’ll transition to third base or the outfield as he grows into his body.
Upon initially signing the deal in September, Sano seemed very confident about his ability to make an impact in the big leagues.
“I’m very thankful to get this chance to sign with the Twins,” Sano said. “I’m going to work very hard to try to get to the majors in two years.”
A two-year romp to the big leagues isn’t entirely unheard of for an elite prospect such as Sano, but it is probably a lofty goal for a player who will be just 17 next season.
It is believed that Sano will begin his professional career next season playing for the Twins’ affiliate in the Gulf Coast League.