Effectively Wild Episode 1239: The Astudillo Origin Story

Ben Lindbergh and Jeff Sullivan banter about the Rays using backup catcher Jesus Sucre as a pitcher to protect a lead, the return of Shohei Ohtani, Javier Baez’s exciting and silly steal of home, and what life would be like with deferred payments. Then (29:58) they bring on Phillies international scouting director Sal Agostinelli to discuss his Willians Astudillo-esque career, discovering, signing, and developing Astudillo, the July 2 signing period, scouting teenaged players, amateur scouting vs. international scouting, the importance of makeup, how to judge international-scouting success, signing players despite being saddled with a small bonus pool, the difficulty of focusing on baseball in Venezuela, expanding into new international markets, and more.

Audio intro: Talib Kweli (Feat. Nigel Hall), "Mr. International"
Audio interstitial: Nat King Cole, "Calico Sal"
Audio outro: Stackridge, "The Road to Venezuela"

Link to Jeff’s post about position-player pitchers
Link to list of deferred payments
Link to Javier Baez’s steal of home
Link to Philadelphia Inquirer feature on Sal Agostinelli
Link to 2018 team WAR from international amateur signees
Link to feature on Phillies’ international scouting
Link to Sal’s baseball-training site

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