A pair of top ten picks, Gavin Cross and Elijah Green, agreed to terms with their teams today. A host of other high picks are set to enter pro ball, as well. We’ll round up other signings among the top 40 here:
- The Angels are in agreement with #13 overall pick Zach Neto, reports Jim Callis of MLB.com (on Twitter). He receives a $3.5MM signing bonus, below the $4.41MM slot value associated with the pick. A 21-year-old shortstop out of Campbell, Neto was ranked the #16 prospect in the draft class by Baseball America. A well-rounded infielder, the righty-hitting Neto is seen as a possible hit-first shortstop at the major league level. He dominated Big South pitching over his three years with the Camels, including a .407/.514/.769 showing in 256 plate appearances as a junior.
- The Mets announced they’ve reached an agreement with #14 selection Jett Williams. The 18-year-old infielder signs for a $3.9MM bonus, reports Tim Healey of Newsday (on Twitter). That’s a bit below the $4.24MM slot value that accompanies the #14 pick. Williams, a switch-hitter from a Texas high school, had been committed to Mississippi State. The #15 prospect in the class according to BA, he’s credited with advanced bat-to-ball skills and surprising bat speed for a player who’s listed at 5’8″ and 185 pounds. The outlet raises some questions about whether he can stick at shortstop but suggests he’s athletic enough to play up-the-middle in some capacity.
- The Braves have an agreement with #20 selection Owen Murphy, Callis reports (Twitter link). It’s a $2.5569MM bonus, below the $3.4MM slot value. A right-hander out of an Illinois high school, Murphy will forego his commitment to Notre Dame. BA rated the 18-year-old as the #45 prospect in the class, writing that he relies heavily on an upper 70s breaking ball that has the potential to be a plus offering.
- The Cardinals announced they’ve signed #22 pick Cooper Hjerpe. Callis reports (on Twitter) that he’ll receive a $3.1822MM signing bonus that matches the pick’s slot value. Hjerpe was one of the top college pitchers in the country, tossing 103 1/3 innings of 2.53 ERA ball with a 39.6% strikeout rate during his junior season at Oregon State. BA rated Hjerpe as the #33 prospect in the class, praising the life he gets on his fastball at the top of the strike zone and his strike-throwing ability.
- The Brewers announced an agreement with #27 pick Eric Brown Jr., which Callis reports is worth $2.15MM (Twitter link). The slot value for the selection is $2.7MM. A shortstop from Coastal Carolina, Brown was the draft’s #55 prospect according to BA. The outlet coincidentally likens his unusual hitting setup to the one Milwaukee manager Craig Counsell utilized as a player, but notes that Brown consistently posts solid exit velocity numbers and has a chance to stick at shortstop. The 21-year-old hit .330/.460/.544 during his junior year in Conway.
- The Braves agreed to terms with #35 selection J.R. Ritchie, Callis reports (Twitter link). It’s a $2.4MM bonus, above the $2.0232MM slot value. A right-handed pitcher from a Washington state high school, Ritchie had been a UCLA commit. BA slotted the 19-year-old as the #52 prospect in the class, crediting him with a solid three-pitch mix (headlined by an above-average slider) and advanced control.
- The Pirates announced a deal with #36 selection Thomas Harrington. The right-hander out of Campbell receives a $2.05MM signing bonus, reports Kevin Gorman of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review (on Twitter). That’s a hair south of the $2.15MM slot value. Harrington was the #45 prospect available, according to BA, which projects him for a pair of above-average secondary offerings (slider and changeup) and possible plus control. The 21-year-old worked 92 2/3 innings of 2.53 ERA ball this season, fanning 30% of batters faced with a sparkling 4.9% walk percentage.