The Blue Jays announced today that they’ve agreed to terms with fifth-round pick Lane Thomas, and MLB.com’s Jim Callis tweets that Thomas will earn a hefty $750K bonus. That’s more than double the $343K value of Thomas’ No. 144 overall selection.
Thomas, a Tennessee commit, wasn’t ranked among MLB.com’s Top 200 draft prospects or the Top 100 of ESPN’s Keith Law, but Baseball America considered him the No. 172 prospect in this year’s draft class. BA praised the high school shortstop/center fielder’s athleticism, noting that many scouts believe he’s a true center fielder with plus speed once he’s underway. Others feel that his strong arm and athleticism will lend well to playing in the infield, per BA’s report. In his tweet, Callis noted that the Tennessee high schooler has solid “all-around tools.”
At $9,458,500, the Blue Jays possess Major League Baseball’s fourth-largest bonus pool this year (as reported by BA’s J.J. Cooper in April), and they figure to save some money after drafting Tommy John victim Jeff Hoffman with the ninth overall pick. Hoffman, once considered a slam-dunk Top 5 talent in the draft, slipped due to his injury and isn’t likely to require the full $3.08MM value of the No. 9 overall slot in order to sign.