Despite baseball being shut down, the July 2nd international signing period is on track to begin and the Milwaukee Brewers aren’t going to fall behind.
MLB Pipeline has released their Top 30 international prospects coming into this year’s signing period and the Milwaukee Brewers are the favorites to sign one of them.
16-year old Jackson Chourio, a shortstop out of Venezuela is ranked as the 16th best prospect in this class and is looking like he’ll sign with the Brewers.
Who Is Jackson Chourio?
Already 6’0″ tall and 165 pounds at age 16, Chourio has good size and plenty of room to grow some more.
According to MLB Pipeline, Chourio has an above-average hit tool and could also end up with above-average power down the line as he matures and develops. That sounds pretty typical of the type of hitters the Brewers have targeted, not only internationally, but in the MLB Draft as well.
Here’s more of MLB Pipeline‘s analysis of Chourio:
"His hit tool might be the most advanced part of his game at the moment, but his defense is not far behind. In fact, he shows good hands in the infield and an average arm now that projects to be a plus tool in the future. Like most prospects his age, Chourio is working on improving his footwork and internal clock, but he continues to make big strides in both areas. In the outfield, he has a good first step in center field and can cover lots of ground because of his running speed, which projects to be a plus tool in the future.At the plate, the teen shows good bat speed, an understanding of the strike zone, and the ability to put backspin on the ball. As a result, he can drive the ball out of the park to all fields, especially the opposite field. He is expected to have plus power as he matures and his body develops. There’s a chance his frame will force him to move to third base or a corner outfield spot, but for now, he’s staying put up the middle."
Chourio is solid defensively and, at least for the near future, he projects to stay at shortstop and will have the necessary skills to play there. As with any 16 year old prospect, there’s a strong chance he will continue to grow in height and weight which could force him to either third base or the corner outfield.
Chourio can drive the ball to all parts of the field and has a pretty advanced approach at the plate, which are great things to see. Those parts of his game will give him a better chance of making it to Milwaukee one day.
There’s a lot of development left to go with Chourio, and there’s a long road ahead of him before he gets to the big leagues.
After he signs, and provided there will be a season, Chourio will likely spend his first season or two in the Dominican Summer League at the Brewers complex down there. Once he proves he’s ready, he’ll move stateside and play at Rookie-Level Arizona and from there, up through the Brewers system of minor league affiliates.
There’s a lot to like about Chourio and time will tell if he’ll become a contributor at the big league level. The Brewers have a clear pipeline with Venezuelan players. In the big leagues in recent years, they’ve had Orlando Arcia, Jhoulys Chacin, Jesus Aguilar, Manny Pina, Junior Guerra, and Hernan Perez. They originally signed Arcia out of Venezuela and have signed numerous prospects since.
Among them, Eduardo Garcia and Hedbert Perez are currently in the Brewers Top 10 prospects. Other Brewers Top 30 prospects signed out of Venezuela in recent years include Luis Medina (No. 11), Carlos Rodriguez (No. 12), Jeferson Quero (No. 17), and Jesus Parra (No. 20).
Chourio is going to add to the string of minor league prospects the Brewers have signed from Venezuela. One final important note from MLB Pipeline is that “Chourio has been praised for his makeup”. With strong character and a strong work ethic, Chourio has all the tools necessary to be a successful big leaguer.
The Brewers won’t be able to officially sign Chourio until this year’s international signing period opens. Generally, once MLB Pipeline names a team as the “favorite” to sign a player, that doesn’t change and upsets don’t really happen from there on out.