The Red Sox and first-round pick Jason Groome have agreed to terms on a $3.65MM signing bonus, reports Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports (via Twitter). The agreement, which is pending a physical, comes less than 24 hours before the deadline to sign 2016 draft picks.
Groome, selected at with the No. 12 overall pick, will receive $457K above his $3.192MM slot value. However, there was some trepidation as to whether he’d sign (or at least as to how much he’d sign for), as the high school lefty was reported to have an agreement in place to go to the Padres at No. 24 for a $5MM bonus. That caused teams to pass on him early in the draft — he was once looked at as a potential first overall pick and later a potential top five selection — but the Sox snagged him at No. 12 anyway despite likely knowing they would be unable to meet that price.
Adding Groome to the system gives Boston a top-end talent to add to its minor league ranks. He rated as the top prospect in this year’s draft class in the estimation of Jim Callis and Jonathan Mayo of MLB.com, while ESPN’s Keith Law rated him second overall and Baseball America ranked him as the draft’s No. 3 prospect. While there have been some negative reports on Groome’s makeup, the scouting reports on him are excellent. Law writes that Groome has the best high school curveball he’s seen since Lucas Giolito, while Callis and Mayo write that the 6’6″, 220-pounder “has everything to be a top-of-the-rotation left-handed starting pitcher,” with a 92-93 mph heater, the aforementioned curveball and a sparsely used changeup for which he shows good feel. BA agreed and praised his “sound delivery” and the necessary strength to repeat his mechanics well.
Beyond Groome, Callis reports (via Twitter) that the Sox have also reached an over-slot agreement with fifth-rounder Mike Shawaryn. The right-hander from Maryland will receive a $637,500 bonus that significantly outpaces his $375,500 slot. Shawaryn rated 77th on BA’s Top 500, 91st on Law’s Top 100 and 139th on MLB.com’s Top 200, with the various scouting reports on the Terrapin righty noting that a down season caused his stock to tumble from a potential first- or second-round pick to the middle rounds. However, the over-slot deal will convince the college junior from taking his chance at a stronger senior season that could’ve rebuilt some of his draft value.
Callis also reports (via Twitter) that Boston also inked fourth-rounder Bobby Dalbec — a third baseman out of Arizona — for a $650K bonus that tops his $501,300 slot. Dalbec came in at No. 88 on MLB.com’s Top 200 and No. 118 on BA’s Top 500.