After drafting 38 players this year in the First-Year Player Draft, 27 of which were pitchers, the Orioles had signed 30 picks as of yesterday afternoon. Of the 30 signed players, 19 are pitchers.
The latest signing announced by the club on Thursday was its ninth-round pick, University of Mississippi infielder Austin Anderson.
The Orioles did not have a pick until the third round and they have signed their first 16 picks, getting every player from the third to the 18th round. Last year, they signed their first 15 picks. That is a pretty solid job by scouting director Gary Rajsich and his area scouts.
The Orioles’ first five selections in this draft were pitchers. At one point, the O’s drafted 11 pitchers consecutively in rounds 16 through 26.
Here is a look at the players that have been signed and the minor league clubs they are currently with. All picks are now either with short-season Single-A Aberdeen or the Orioles Gulf Coast League affiliate. Some players’ assignments are not set yet and they are listed as TBA - to be announced.
Round 3 - LHP Brian Gonzalez, GCL
Round 4 - RHP Pat Connaughton, Aberdeen
Round 5 - RHP David Hess, Aberdeen
Round 6 - LHP Tanner Scott, GCL
Round 7 - LHP Max Schuh, TBA
Round 8 - 2B Steve Wilkerson, Aberdeen
Round 9 - 3B Austin Anderson, TBA
Round 10 - OF Jay Gonzalez, Aberdeen
Round 11 - LHP John Means, Aberdeen
Round 12 - RHP Nigel Nootbaar, Aberdeen
Round 13 - LHP Matt Trowbridge, TBA
Round 14 - OF Gerrion Grim, GCL
Round 15 - 2B Alejandro Juvier, GCL
Round 16 - RHP Tanner Chleborad, Aberdeen
Round 17 - RHP Jean Cosme, TBA
Round 18 - RHP Matthew Grimes, Aberdeen
Round 20 - RHP Zach Albin, GCL
Round 21 - LHP John McLeod, Aberdeen
Round 22 - RHP Josh Walker, Aberdeen
Round 23 - RHP Zeke McGranahan, GCL
Round 24 - RHP Lucas Long, GCL
Round 27 - SS Austin Pfeiffer, Aberdeen
Round 29 - RHP Patrick Baker, TBA
Round 30 - RHP Michael Burke, GCL
Round 31 - 3B Riley Palmer, Aberdeen
Round 32 - OF Jamill Moquete, Aberdeen
Round 35 - OF Tad Gold, Aberdeen
Round 36 - 1B Alexander Lee, GCL
Round 38 - RHP Keegan Ghidotti, GCL
Round 40 - OF T.J. Olesczuk, GCL
One draft pick the O’s will not likely sign is left-handed pitcher Brandon Bonilla. He was taken in the 25th round out of Grand Canyon (Ariz.) University.
Bonilla is the son of former Oriole Bobby Bonilla and godson of Barry Bonds. He has a fastball that can reach the mid- to upper-90s.
But a source said negotiations have not progressed and the Orioles feel he is going back to school. They are leaving the door open, but Bonilla’s signing seems unlikely at this point.
Three picks the Orioles still are considering signing are 33rd-round right-hander Brandon Koch, 37th-round right-hander Hunter Hart and 39th-round right-hander Tucker Simpson.
Here are signing bonuses on six of the Orioles’ eight top-10 round picks that have been reported by Baseball America and/or MLBPipeline.com and confirmed by MASNSports.com. To the right is the slot value for that pick and, as you can note, Brian Gonzalez and Tanner Scott were signed to overslot bonuses.
Round 3: Brian Gonzalez for $700,000 ($594,200).
Round 4: Pat Connaughton for $428,100 ($428,100).
Round 5: David Hess for $280,000 ($320,500).
Round 6: Tanner Scott for $650,000 ($240,000).
Round 8: Steve Wilkerson for $10,000 ($157,300).
Round 10: Jay Gonzalez for $5,000 ($137,600).
The O’s seventh-round pick, Schuh, reportedly signed for near the slot value of $179,900. Ninth-round pick Anderson reportedly signed for well under the slot value of $146,800.
The Orioles’ allotted amount to sign their top 10 picks was $2,204,400. By my estimate with the figures above, they have spent just about that amount. If there is any savings from their allotted amount, it could be used for any pick from round 11 on. Picks from rounds 11-40 can be signed for as much as $100,000 each. Teams can exceed that $100,000 amount, but it must come from savings from their money allotted to sign the top 10 picks.