Amateur Signing Bonuses: Red Sox

Next up in our series looking at the largest signing bonuses given to amateur players: the Red Sox…

  1. Jose Iglesias, $6.25MM (2009)
  2. Casey Kelly, $3MM (2008)
  3. Anthony Ranaudo, $2.55MM (2010)
  4. Ryan Westmoreland, $2MM (2008)
  5. Jose Vinicio, $1.95MM (2009)

Given their revenue streams, it should be no surprise that the Red Sox spend big. Iglesias signed after defecting from Cuban and is widely considered to be the best defensive shortstop in minor league baseball. His bat was better than expected this season, as he hit .295/.339/.379 in 284 plate appearances. A broken finger robbed him of more than two months of the season, however.

Kelly is the team's best prospect at the moment, now that he's no longer dabbling at shortstop and is focused exclusively on pitching. He reached Double-A at age-20 this year, and owns a 3.69 ERA with 7.3 K/9 and 2.4 BB/9 in 190 minor league innings. Ranaudo was arguably the best pitching prospect available in the 2010 draft but he fell to the 39th overall pick because of injury concerns. The Red Sox spent the money and took the risk as they tend to do, and they'll eagerly await his professional debut next season.

Westmoreland was an elite level talent that fell to the fifth round of the 2008 draft due to contract demands, and he was the team's top prospect before a "cavernous malformation of the brain" got in the way. He missed the entire 2010 season after having brain surgery and is recovering well, even starting to perform baseball activities within the last month or so. Vinicio was a high profile signing out of the Dominican Republic last summer. The 17-year-old shortstop hit .253/.290/.373 in 170 plate appearances for Boston's rookie level affiliate this year.

It's worth noting that Daisuke Matsuzaka received a $2MM bonus as part of his six-year, $52MM contract. He had zero MLB experience at the time of the contract, but he was certainly no amateur given all of the time he spent pitching in Japan.

21 Responses to Amateur Signing Bonuses: Red Sox Leave a Reply

  1. jwredsox 5 years ago

    I love Vinicio because at 17 he is only 3 months older then me yet is already in rookie ball for the Sox. Pretty cool if you ask me

    • Dave_Gershman 5 years ago

      so that would make me 7 months older than him.

      I’m really excited to see what Ranaudo will do in pro ball. Lots of potential for A-Ran.

      • jwredsox 5 years ago

        I excited for Vitek. I think he will end up being the best Sox player from that draft class.

        • Dave_Gershman 5 years ago

          Maybe. Ill say Ranaudo or Workman. I also like Cecchni, Perkins, and Coyle as well.

          • start_wearing_purple 5 years ago

            A lot of that draft class for the Sox has good potential. It’ll be interesting to re-evaluate them in 2 years.

      • NickinIthaca 5 years ago

        Damn you guys are young…. I have to say that with the amount of insight provided by a lot of you guys, I’m amazed to hear you are as young as you are. And that is not meant in a patronizing way what so ever. Although it also helps explain how you have the knowledge of the farm systems for so many teams….

        • Sniderlover 5 years ago

          That’s what happens when you love baseball.

        • Dave_Gershman 5 years ago

          Thanks Nick. Much appreciated. Yeah there aren’t too many of us young guys but just quite a few. Although when it comes to MLBTR, whether your 10, 17, 40 or 100, were all just huge Baseball fans!

        • TapDancingTeddy 5 years ago

          jwredsox and Span-D are a pair of kids! Can I yell at them to not run with a scissors or something?

          I am 653 months (or maybe years) older than Jose Vinicio, and as a Yankee fan, just hope to live long enough to see the guy be a bust.

          Hey, it’s not as mean as it sounds! He already made two million dollars just by inking his contract.

      • jspi 5 years ago

        A-RAN thats hystreical

    • ELPinchy 5 years ago

      Oh man,that explains so much.

    • 0bsessions 5 years ago

      That’s a novelty that wears off swiftly once it starts happening regularly. I remember watching King Felix one hit the Red Sox back in ’07 and thinking “Crap, this guy is younger than my little brother.”

  2. redsox4120 5 years ago

    Ranaudo is going to be a force some day. When the Sox sent him to the Cape League earlier this year, he pitched outstanding.

    • BoSoXaddict 5 years ago

      He really did. If I remember correctly, he didn’t give up an earned run during his entire Cape League stint.

      • redsox4120 5 years ago

        I think you’re right. Ranaudo was supposed to be drafted very high but he had shoulder surgery that kept him sidelined for most of the year and his value went down. Luckily for us Sox fans, Theo knew the kind of talent this kid has and drafted him. That’s just smart managing. We’re very fortunate to have such a wise GM.

  3. If Ranaudo does well(I think he will)he may end up giving Kelly a run for his money. He could probably end up overtaking Kelly. I also like Vitek from the draft, lots of potential.

    • start_wearing_purple 5 years ago

      When I heard the Sox drafted Ranaudo I was a little shocked. I tend not to know much about amateur talent, but I did know Ranaudo’s name kept popping up every where with a consensus of “ace potential.” I really would have thought some team would have gambled. Worse case scenario would have been getting another draft pick in 2011. But the truth is I’m waiting to see his first pro season before saying too much about him.

      • dc21892 5 years ago

        I was shocked, also. As I thought about it though, aside from his elbow injury he was a force. It was well worth the risk and can’t wait to see where he gets.

  4. I’m surprised no one has talked about Westmoreland yet. It’s a shame what happened to him, I realize he was still early in his development but this kid looked like a future superstar. He’s making tremendous progress already and if he can somehow make it back to playing professional baseball it would be one of the greatest stories in baseball.

    As for Ranaudo, I think he has a higher ceiling than Kelly. But if Ranaudo and Kelly can turn into Lester & Buchholz 2.0, the Red Sox rotation will be a force for years and years to come. The sox farm system is as weak as its been in years due to graduating a lot of prospects recently and the loss of Westmoreland, but this years draft did a lot to refill the talent pool.

  5. baseballz 5 years ago

    I got to say in a year, after the last draft, the Sox system will prob be in the top 5 in the majors. Personally i’m excited to see Cecchni after next year. I think its a safe bet A-Ran is pitching in the same rotation as Bucholz and Lester in a couple years. Damn fine job of drafting and I wouldn’t count Westmorland out at all.

    • jspi 5 years ago

      The kid hasn`t throwm a pro b all yet and he is called A-RAN .NOW THATS HYSTERICAL.

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