The Orioles have begun serious negotiations with their top draft pick, right-hander Hunter Harvey out of Bandys High School in Catawba, N.C., according to an industry source.
All along it has seemed like once the talks heated up that an agreement could follow pretty quickly. That is still quite possible. This may only take a few days.
Harvey was rated by Baseball America as the 33rd-best player overall and the seventh-best right-hander in the draft after a senior year when he went 8-0 with an ERA of 0.38. Over 54 2/3 innings, he gave up just two extra-base hits, both doubles, and fanned 116.
In this interview with MASNsports.com earlier this week, Bryan Harvey, Hunter's father and a former big league pitcher, said negotiations should not be difficult.
"I don't think there should be that big of a holdup. It's not like we're asking for the moon. I'll just leave it at that. It's not going to be a tough negotiation," Bryan Harvey said.
Two other O's picks that had earlier reached agreements with the club have now passed their physicals and are officially signed. They are second-round pick Chance Sisco and eighth-round selection Trey Mancini. Mancini will report to short-season Single-A Aberdeen and Sisco to the Gulf Coast League Orioles.
A high school catcher from Santiago High in Corona, Calif., Sisco was the 61st pick in the draft. The O's drafted three high school catchers in the first six rounds and all three, including Jonah Heim (round 4) and Alex Murphy (round 6) from Calvert Hall in Baltimore, will start their careers with the Gulf Coast League squad.
Mancini, a first baseman from Notre Dame, was the 249th overall selection. He hit .389 with seven homers and 54 RBIs for the Fighting Irish.
The O's are also making some progress with their other unsigned top 10 picks, including high school outfielder Josh Hart, taken 37th overall in the competitive balance round. He was the club's second pick. Also, some progress has been made with Youngstown State third baseman Drew Dosch, the Orioles' seventh-round pick.
The Orioles remain confident they will sign every top 10 round pick. If they do get Harvey, Hart and Dosch, they would have agreements with all of their first 14 picks except for pitcher Jacob Bray, taken in round 12.
O's announce signings: This afternoon, the Orioles announced they have signed contracts with seven more picks: Trey Mancini (8), Austin Wynns (10), Randolph Gassaway (16), Dylan Rheault (19), Donnie Hart (27), Justin Viele (37) and Garrett Cortright (40). Mancini and Wynns will report to Aberdeen, the others to GCL.