Hunter Greene’s Record Bonus Caps Draft Signing Deadline

Hunter Greene (Photo by Alex Trautwig/MLB Photos via Getty Images)

No. 2 overall pick Hunter Greene signed with the Reds on Friday, and the Los Angeles prep righthander will receive the largest signing bonus of the bonus-pool draft era.

Greene, the righthander who throws up to 101 mph as well as a shortstop with prodigious power, will receive $7.23 million, according to BA’s Hudson Belinsky, making Greene the third player in this year’s draft to get $7 million or more. Kyle Wright (Braves, $7 million) and Brendan McKay (Rays, $7.005 million) had previously reached that level.

Before this year, the largest signing bonus for a player since bonus pools (and stiff penalties for exceeding them) were introduced for the 2012 draft was Kris Bryant’s $6,708,000 deal as the No. 2 pick in 2013. The largest signing bonus in draft history remains $8 million to 2011 No. 1 overall pick Gerrit Cole, while 2009 No. 1 overall pick Stephen Strasburg retains the record for largest draft contract (guaranteed more than $15 million on a major league deal).

Greene was the biggest news of the deadline but not the only news. Every first-round pick wound up signing, with No. 30 pick Alex Lange, the second of the Cubs’ two first-round picks, finally agreeing at the deadline to a bonus reported to be $1.925 million, according to multiple media reports. That’s below the $2,184,300 slot the Cubs had at the No. 30 pick.

Lange, who helped pitch Louisiana State to the College World Series finals, came to Chicago and had a physical Monday, which apparently resulted in a last-minute problem, which club president Theo Epstein termed a “procedural” issue. Other sources indicated the physical revealed an unspecified health issue.

Every other first-rounder signed. The highest-drafted unsigned player remained Oregon State righty Drew Rasmussen, while the highest-drafted unsigned high schooler was fourth-round pick Jack Conlon, the Orioles’ selection who is slated to attend Texas A&M. The other unsigned prep in the first five rounds was South Alabama signee Joseph Booker (fifth round, Angels).

Complete signings and bonus information will be updated over the weekend in the Baseball America Draft Database.

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