WHITTIER - Rio Hondo College baseball head coach Mike Salazar has announced that 2022 All-State catcher Rafael Flores has signed an undrafted free agent deal with the New York Yankees.
Flores, out of Katella High School, had an impressive sophomore season for the Roadrunners this past spring. He racked up the postseason honors, being named All-State and first-team All-South Coast Conference while also earning the California Community College Baseball Coaches Association (CCCBCA)/Rawlings Gold Glove Award. Overall, Flores compiled a .380 batting average and totaled 63 hits, 16 doubles, 9 home runs, and 36 RBI in 39 games for the Roadrunners.
According to Salazar, the Yankees had originally planned to select Flores during the mid to late rounds of the 2022 MLB Draft in July, but for whatever reason, that fell through.
"The MLB Draft only had 20 rounds this year," said Salazar. "He was supposed to go in the 8th-12th round, but it didn't happen. As soon as the draft was over, they signed him.
"The Yankees flew him out to New York to sign his contract. He is now in Florida at their player development center, waiting to be sent to a minor league team."
Flores most recently played for the Alaska Goldpanners, a collegiate summer league team in Fairbanks. Before signing with the Yankees, Flores was hitting .348 over 28 games with 36 RBI and 20 runs.
(Chris Ruiz, Rio Hondo College Athletics)