By Martin Gallagher
The Phillies, who got young real fast last season when they traded geezers Chase Utley and Cole Hamels for a boatload of prospects, are continuing their youth movement.
They signed 17-year-old Simon Muzziotti, an outfielder from Venezuela to a $750,000 bonus.
Muzziotti was a free agent, despite the fact the Red Sox paid him a $300,000 bonus last summer and despite the fact he hit .317 in 17 games this summer for the Red Sox in the Dominican Summer League.
Muzziotti became a free agent again recently only because major league baseball penalized the Red Sox for trying to circumvent the rules during the previous international signing period. The Red Sox were not permitted to sign players for more than $300,000 during the 2015-16 signing period because they exceeded their bonus pool in the 2014-15 signing period.
One scout told MLB.com last summer that Muzziotti compared to a young Jacoby Ellsbury. Muzziotti had been clocked at 6.5 seconds in the 60-yard dash.
The Phillies previously agreed to terms with five other international players: right-hander Francisco Morales ($720,000 signing bonus), shortstop Brayan Gonzalez ($900,000), shortstop Nicolas Torres ($665,000), catcher Juan Aparicio ($475,000) and shortstop Jose Tortolero ($450,000).