The Twins pulled one of the biggest surprises of last week’s draft when they selected speedy prep outfielder Ben Revere with their first-round pick (28th overall), and they followed it up by being the first team to sign their first-round selection. The Twins announced Tuesday that they signed Revere for a signing bonus of $750,000, making him a potential bargain if their scouts are right.
Major League Baseball’s recommended bonus for the 28th overall slot is probably in the $1.1 million to $1.2 million range. In last yearâ€™s draft, the Red Sox signed North Carolina righthander Daniel Bard for $1.55 million with the 28th pick.
More notably, every player in the first round last year received a signing bonus of at least $950,000. In fact, we have to go back nearly a decade to find the last first-round pick to sign for $750,000 based purely on market value. That was the 1998 draft, when the Giants signed Penn State righthander Nate Bump as the 25th overall selection. Even then, Bump was a college senior (and thus had little bargaining power) who agreed to a predraft deal.
There are a few equal or lower bonuses since then, but all involved extenuating circumstances. In the 2000 draft, the Mets had the 16th overall selection and had agreed in principle on a $1.7 million bonus with Loyola Marymount lefthander Billy Traber, when an MRI revealed a partial tear of the medial collateral ligament in his elbow. Traber eventually signed for $400,000. In the same draft, the Reds signed infielder David Espinosa to a deal with no bonus, but it was strictly to make the deal fit in their budget. They guaranteed $2.95 million to Espinosa in an eight-year major league contract.
The only other bonus that low came in 2003, when the Padres signed righthander Tim Stauffer for $750,000 after he and his agent revealed that he had weakness in his shoulder. The Padres had initially offered $2.6 million to Stauffer, but reduced the offer after the shoulder problems came to light.
So were the Twins just trying to save money with their first-round pick? It’s hard to question the motives of Mike Radcliff, baseball’s longest-tenured scouting director and one of the most respected scouts in the business. More than money, it’s likely this pick involved a strong belief in Revere from the Twins’ scouts, and in turn Radcliff’s faith in the people who work for him. If they weren’t going to take one of the high-dollar players who slipped (and the Twins likely never will be one of those teams), why not take the player you have the strongest convictions about? Revere also wasn’t a consensus first-rounder, though, so the Twins did save money at the same time rather than just handing out a slot bonus. That they were the first team to sign their first-round selection should come as no surprise.
Comments will be monitored prior to being added to the site. Comments that include profanity or personal attacks or other inappropriate comments or material will be rejected. Additionally, entries that are unsigned or contain "signatures" by someone other than the actual author will be removed.
We have chosen to open up commenting to everyone, so comment away! We want to hear from each and every one of you! Leave a comment.
About This Blog
Syndicate This Blog
Search This Blog