Rays sign No. 1 rated international prospect Adrian Rondon for $3 million on his 16th birthday

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Things haven’t gone according to plan in Tampa Bay this season, but the Rays just made a huge splash for their future by signing Baseball America’s top-ranked international prospect for $2.95 million.

Today is the first day Adrian Rondon is eligible to sign because it’s his 16th birthday and the Rays moved quickly to add the right-handed-hitting shortstop from the Dominican Republic.

Tampa Bay must believe that Rondon is destined for stardom because Ben Badler of Baseball America reports that by going so far beyond their designated spending limits the Rays will be forced to pay a 100 percent tax on all international spending above $2 million and won’t be allowed to sign any prospects for more than $300,000 for a while.

But if Rondon turns into a stud 4-5 years down the road no one will remember any of those penalties.

(Check out Badler’s scouting report on Rondon by clicking here.)

Report: Momentum in talks between Mariners, Jon Jay

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MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand reports that there is some momentum in talks between the Mariners and free agent outfielder Jon Jay.

Jay, 32, hit .296/.374/.375 in 433 plate appearances with the Cubs last season, which is adequate. He’s heralded more for his defense and his ability to play all three outfield spots.

The Mariners are losing center fielder Jarrod Dyson to free agency and likely don’t want to rely on Guillermo Heredia next season, hence the interest in Jay. The free agent class for center fielders is otherwise relatively weak.