Next up in our series looking at each team's top amateur signing bonuses, the Indians…
- Danys Baez, $4.5MM (1999)
- Jeremy Guthrie, $3MM (2002)
- Drew Pomeranz, $2.65MM (2010)
- Jeremy Sowers, $2.475MM (2004)
- Alex White, $2.25MM (2009)
Baez's bonus was part of the four-year, $14.5MM contract Cleveland gave him after he defected from Cuba as a 22-year-old. After a year in Triple-A, the Indians gave him a rotation spot in 2002 and watched Baez post a respectable 4.41 ERA, 7.1 K/9, and 4.5 BB/9. Overall, Baez had a 3.92 ERA in 291.1 innings with Cleveland in a variety of roles (starter, setup man, closer) before they cut ties with him after the 2003 season.
Guthrie, the 22nd overall pick in 2002, never hit his stride in Cleveland, appearing in just 16 games (37 IP, 6.08 ERA) for the Tribe before being designated for assignment and subsequently claimed off waivers by the Orioles in January 2007. Sowers' tenure with the Indians was just as forgettable, though he got a much longer look. The sixth overall pick in the 2004 draft started 71 games for Cleveland from 2006-2009, though he pitched to just a 5.18 ERA with a measly 3.9 K/9 in exactly 400 IP. He spent 2010 in their minor league system.
White and Pomeranz are the team's two most recent first round picks. White (15th overall in 2009) split the 2010 season between the Single-A and Double-A levels, posting a 2.45 ERA with 7.0 K/9 and 2.7 BB/9 in 150.2 IP. Pomeranz (5th overall in 2010) signed right at the August 16th deadline and will start his professional career next season.