Thursday, August 16, 2007
The Sox signed more than a few draft picks yesterday with the most noteworthy being fifth round selection, Will Middlebrooks. He was widely considered a late first or supplemental round talent. The Olde Towne Team inked him for $925K - the largest bonus given in this year’s draft. Middlebrooks is both a pitching and third base prospect, but many think he will play the hot corner. With that being said and that he “…drew college interest as a quarterback and punter,” it is easy to feel confident about the assessment that Middlebrooks is very athletic and big (6-4 / 215). Baseball America further states that “…his size gives him leverage that will produce power. He’s an athletic third baseman with good range and a strong arm, and he runs well for his size.”
On the downside, the Sox did not sign their second-round selection Hunter Morris as expected. He is the first top draft choice not inked during Theo and the trio’s tenure. Keith Law on ESPN.com wrote that Morris “changed his tune after he was drafted” and later in a chat earlier today said “They had discussed his bonus demands before the draft, and after they took him, he raised his number.” The boy’s father has a different take.
"He made a commitment to Auburn and said then there was a certain dollar amount (he would sign for) and if it wasn't there he was going to school,'' the father said.” He said he made that commitment and he
wouldn't back down from that commitment.''
It seems like the two parties did not communicate well on the price to buy Morris out of college. As I have said before, the Sox should have drafted Matt Harvey with their second or third round selection, who did not sign with LAA. In many circles, Harvey was one of the top high school arms. Early on, he was thought of the same breath as another Scott Boras’ client, and now $7.3 million wealthier, Rick Porcello.
One more note, local boy, Jack McGeary, got the cake and ate it too. He slipped in the draft to the sixth round, but got a first-round signing bonus of $1.8 million plus a free Stanford education from the Nationals. The plan for McGeary is to be a full-time student and play ball in the summers. I don’t think he needs to take Contract Negotiations 101.
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