O's get Machado

The Orioles have come to terms with their top draft pick, Miami prep shortstop Manny Machado, the third pick in the first round. Machado's bonus is between five and six million dollars. Machado goes 6'2" and 180 pounds and is a right-handed hitter. He just turned 18 July 6th. This season for Miami's Brito High he batted .639-12-56 and had 27 doubles in 86 at bats and 44 of his 55 hits went for extra bases. As a junior, he hit .636-8-53. Last summer he helped lead the USA 18 and under national team to the gold medal win over Cuba in the Pan America Junior Championships. He hit .367-2-9 as that club went 8 and 0. Here is what Jim Callis of Baseball America said of Machado: "He does draw comps to A-Rod because he's a shortstop with five tools from Miami. That's ludicrous because A-Rod is one of the best in baseball history. "But Manny Machado is a stud. This guy would be the number one pick in some years in the draft. At the time of the draft when the Rays took Tim Beckham number one two years ago, and he has struggled, but if you are grading out how good Beckham was when they took him, Manny Machado is a better player than Beckham was when he was the number one pick." Machado, scouts say, has plus tools almost across the board, except for his speed, which is rated average. He has a very strong arm and many think he can remain as a shortstop in the pro ranks. In the end, the O's signed 39 of their 49 draft picks. That's the most ever signed in Joe Jordan's six years as scouting director. They had nine selections among the first ten rounds and got eight of the nine players, missing only on sixth-round pick, Cal pitcher Dixon Anderson. Jordan said the club exceeded last year's draft spending of 8.7 million.

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