June 15, 2012 at 7:49 PM
The Red Sox officially announced the signings of 11 players selected in the 2012 First-Year Player Draft on Friday. Several of the signings had already been reported, but headlining the list of new announcements were the signings of fourth-rounder Ty Buttrey and supplemental first-round pick Pat Light, both right-handed pitchers, to bonuses of $1.3 million and $1 million, respectively.
Buttrey, a 19-year-old graduate of Providence High School in Charlotte, N.C., was seen as one of the players that would be toughest for the Red Sox to sign. Although he was drafted in the fourth round, 151st overall, Buttrey was ranked much higher by most scouting services. Baseball America and ESPN.com’s Keith Law both ranked Buttrey among the top 40 prospects in the draft, John Sickels had Buttrey in his top 50, and Perfect Game slotted Buttrey at number 60 on its list. Buttrey’s $1.3 million bonus represents the highest bonus for a player outside of the first two rounds so far this year, according to BA, and was $1,008,700 higher than the $291,300 slot value for the 151st pick, where he was selected. Buttrey sat at 90-93 mph later in the spring, but was clocked as high as 96 this year. He also throws a good knuckle-curve and has a developing changeup. The 6-foot-5, 200-pounder was committed to play at Arkansas.
Light was selected 37th overall out of Monmouth University in New Jersey, and is the earliest selection to sign with the Sox thus far. His $1 million bonus actually was $394,300 below the slot value for the pick, helping the Sox save enough money to sign Buttrey. Sox GM Ben Cherington has said that the team believed the 6-foot-6-inch, 200-pound right-hander had one of the best fastballs in the draft, sitting 90-96. He also throws a slider and changeup that need work, and while he could round into a starter down the road, his best projection may be as a late-inning reliever in the majors.
Another above-slot signee was second-rounder Jamie Callahan, a South Carolina high-schooler. Callahan, young for the draft at just 17, received a $600,000 bonus, $34,400 higher than the slot value of the 87th pick. Signed out of a commitment to South Carolina, Callahan sits 88-92 mph and can reach 93-94. He throws both a curveball and slider that have both looked good at times, and has shown a developing changeup.
Other new signings announced Friday included California high school outfielder Shaq Thompson, Georgia Tech senior first baseman Jake Davies, and UNC Charlotte senior catcher Miguel Rodriguez. Thompson, one of the best football recruits in the nation this year, signed a dual-sport contract that, according to WEEI’s Alex Speier, will count for less than the $100,000 allotted for picks after the 10th round. Thompson, a defensive back, will play football at the University of Washington in the fall. The other two new signees may be more noteworthy for who they are related to: Davies, the MVP of the ACC Tournament, is the brother of major league pitcher Kyle Davies, while Rodriguez is the son of Red Sox Minor League Hitting Coordinator Victor Rodriguez and brother of Red Sox scout Victor Rodriguez, Jr.
The Red Sox also made official the signings of right-handers Mike Augliera and Kyle Kraus, first baseman Nathan Minnich, shortstop Mike Miller, and left-hander Dylan Chavez, which had all been previously reported. All five have been assigned to the Lowell Spinners. Curiously absent from the release was the signing of sixth-round pick Justin Haley, who is already listed on the Lowell Spinners’ roster. Also reported elsewhere as having signed are 10th-round pick J.T. Watkins, a senior catcher out of Army, and 13th-round pick J.B. Wendelken, a right-hander out of Middle Georgia Junior College.
After today’s announcement, the only Sox picks from the first 10 rounds to not either have officially signed or been reported as signed are first-round picks Deven Marrero and Brian Johnson and third-round pick Austin Maddox. Johnson and Maddox, a left-hander and right-hander, respectively, are still playing for Florida in the College World Series, and cannot sign until the team’s season ends.
Based on the reported signing bonuses of the eight players from the first 10 rounds who have signed, the club has spent $3,066,000 dollars on signing bonuses—plus whatever bonus Watkins received, which almost certainly will be below $5,000 and will likely be much less—counting towards its draft cap of $6,884,800. That means the club has about $3,818,800 remaining to sign Marrero, Johnson, and Maddox, and to spend above $100,000 on any picks outside of the 10th round, without incurring a penalty. The combined slot value of the three unsigned picks is $3,725,500, although SoxProspects.com Editor-in-Chief Mike Andrews projects their combined bonuses to come in about $300,000 below that. Should the club decide to spend over its cap and incur a 75% tax on any amount exceeding the cap, it can spend another $344,240 without losing its first-round pick in next year’s draft.
A complete list of the signings and bonuses, if reported, follows:
Rd-Pick, Pos., Name, School, Bonus
1S-37. RHP Pat Light, Monmouth, Jr., $1 million
2-87 RHP Jamie Callahan, Dillon HS (S.C.), $600,000
4-151. RHP Ty Buttrey, Providence HS (N.C.), $1.3 million
5-181. RHP Mike Augliera, Binghamton, Sr., $25,000
7-241. RHP Kyle Kraus, Portland, Sr., $1,000
8-271. 1B Nathan Minnich, Shepherd, Sr., $10,000
9-301. SS Mike Miller, Cal Poly, Sr., $5,000
13-421. LHP Dylan Chavez, Mississippi, Jr.
18-571. CF Shaq Thompson, Grant HS (Calif.)
21-661. 1B Jake Davies, Georgia Tech, Sr.
36-1111. C Miguel Rodriguez, UNC Charlotte, Sr.