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2013 MLB Draft: Signings Update

Draft : : Story
Allan Simpson        
Published: Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Signing-deadline deals have become almost a thing in the past in the baseball draft as a result of measures taken to hasten signings in the latest Collective Bargaining Agreement between Major League Baseball and the Players Association, but several key players still remain unsigned with this year’s deadline just two days away.

Teams have until 5 p.m. ET on Friday to get all players from this year’s draft in the fold, and four first-round selections (including three of the first 10 picks) are among those still holding out. Overall, 13 players in the first 10 rounds have not come to terms.

University of San Diego third baseman Kris Bryant, selected second overall by the Chicago Cubs, is among the holdouts. He has reportedly been seeking a bonus in excess of the assigned value of $6,708,400 for the second pick, although it is considered almost a certainly that Bryant will find common ground with the Cubs and sign before the deadline.

We’re confident we’ll get it done,” Cubs general manager Jed Hoyer told cubs.com. “We’ll make it an exceptionally fair offer. If Kris wants to be a Cub and be a professional baseball player, I’m confident we’ll get a deal done. Sometimes it takes a deadline to make a deal, and we have a deadline coming up shortly. In a lot of ways, I think it’s a plus at this point.”

Other first-rounders not in the fold with the deadline drawing near are University of North Carolina third baseman Colin Moran, drafted sixth overall by the Miami Marlins; California high-school righthander Phil Bickford, selected 10
th by the Toronto Blue Jays; and Fresno State outfielder Aaron Judge, chosen 32nd by the New York Yankees.

All are expected to sign for bonuses roughly equivalent to the assigned values for their respective slots. Moran can expect to receive a bonus of about $3,516,600—the recommended amount for the sixth pick—while Bickford is in line for a bonus of $2,921,400 and Judge $1,677,100.

Bryant, Moran and Judge are all college selections, and most likely would return to college for their senior seasons if they choose not to sign, while Bickford, a high-school selection, has committed to attend college at Cal State Fullerton.

A team that fails to sign its first-round pick (or any pick in the first three rounds, for that matter) receives a corresponding selection in the following year’s draft.

The Marlins are almost certain to receive at least one bonus selection in 2014 for supplemental first-rounder Matt Krook, a California prep lefthander selected 35
th overall who failed his physical in late June, stemming from a sore left shoulder, and subsequently rejected a reduced bonus offer from the Marlins. Krook has indicated he will attend the University of Oregon rather than sign with the Marlins.

The Marlins also have not signed their third-round pick, Florida prep shortstop Ben Deluzio, who plans to attend Florida State if he doesn’t sign by Friday.

A year ago, Appel was one of only eight players in the first 10 rounds to go unsigned—a draft record. In 2011, 27 players in the top 10 rounds went unsigned, and the dramatic decrease in the number of unsigned picks was attributed to the new CBA, which placed a premium on teams drafting players in the early rounds that were signable and players signing well in advance of the deadline.

While a handful of unsigned players, including all the first-rounders, are still expected to sign just before Friday’s deadline, most big-league teams have all players they drafted and plan to sign already in the fold.

The Chicago White Sox have signed their first 32 selections, the Seattle Mariners their initial 31 picks and St. Louis Cardinals their top 28.

The Los Angeles Angels
, meanwhile, forfeited their first-round pick in this year’s draft but have nearly run the table by signing all of their picks except for Texas prep righthander Blake Goins, a 12th-rounder headed for the University of Texas.

Should the Angels get Goins in the fold, they would become the only team in draft history (June, regular phase) to sign all their draft picks. Previously, the only other team to sign all but one of its selections was the 1985 Los Angeles Dodgers, who signed 33 of 34 picks—the exception being their fourth-rounder, Illinois State outfielder Mike Prior, who opted for a career as a wide receiver in the National Football League.


UNSIGNED PICKS, TOP
10 ROUNDS

ROUND ONE

Cubs (2). Kris Bryant, 3b, University of San Diego
Marlins (6). Colin Moran, 3b, University of North Carolina.
Blue Jays (10). Phil Bickford, Oaks Christian HS/California (Cal State Fullerton recruit)
Yankees (32). Aaron Judge, of, Fresno State University

SUPPLEMENTAL FIRST ROUND

Marlins (37). Matt Krook, lhp, St. Ignatius College Prep/California (Oregon recruit)

ROUND THREE

Marlins. Ben Deluzio, ss, The First Academy/Florida (Florida State recruit)

ROUND FOUR

Red Sox. Myles Smith, rhp, Lee (Tenn.) University.

ROUND FIVE

Phillies. Ben Wetzler, lhp, Oregon State University.

ROUND SIX

Phillies. Jason Monda, of, Washington State University.
Rays. Stephen Woods, Half Hollow East HS/New York (Albany recruit).
Giants. Nick Vander Tuig, rhp, UCLA.

ROUND EIGHT

Twins. Dustin DeMuth, 3b, Indiana University.

ROUND TEN

Indians. Ross Kivett, 2b, Kansas State.

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