By Michael Levesque
August 21, 2002
MONTREAL–The Expos forged ahead with an eye toward the future–however uncertain that future might be–when they announced the signing of Houston high school righthander Clint Everts Tuesday night.
Everts, the fifth overall selection in June, agreed to a 2003 contract with a $2.5 million bonus.
The Expos and Everts’ agent Larry Reynolds had been negotiating all summer, except for four days when talks stalled in early August. Everts was scheduled to enroll at Baylor this weekend.
“It’s a burden off my shoulders,” Everts said. “I’ve just been waiting all summer, and I’m just ready to get started.”
The 6-foot-2, 170-pound Everts features a 90-94 mph fastball, with a good curveball and changeup. He struck out 157 batters in 81 innings during his senior season at Cypress Falls High in Houston. He finished his senior year 8-2, 0.73. Everts also pitched a no-hitter as a junior in a game in which he struck out 17.
Expos scouting director Dana Brown credited general manager Omar Minaya with completing Everts’ signing.
“I think Omar really did the job,” Brown said. “He did a good job of getting him done. It’s a big-time relief for me, and I’m excited about getting it done because I love this kid and I think he could move fast. I could see him going to spring training and possibly starting next year at full season Class-A.”
With the signing, the Expos have signed their first seven draft picks and 22 of their first 26. The team is still negotiating and trying and sign eighth-round pick Friedel Pinkston, a righthander from Hartwell, Ga., and 13th-rounder Brett Nyquist, a lefthander out of College of the St. Scholastica in Minnesota. Justin Azze, a 10th-round pick out of Orange Coast (Calif.) Community College, appears headed for the University of Hawaii.