The Diamondbacks agreed to terms with No. 33 overall pick Brennan Malone, reports Jim Callis of MLB.com (on Twitter). He’ll receive a full-slot bonus of $2,202,200.
Although he was selected 33rd overall, Malone was the third pick in a massive D-backs draft class that was buoyed by compensatory picks for the losses of Patrick Corbin and A.J. Pollock as well as their inability to sign their top 2018 pick, No. 25 overall selection Matt McLain. Malone is the first of the team’s high-profile picks to agree to terms.
A high school right-hander out of Florida, Malone had been committed to the University of North Carolina but will instead begin his professional career. He ranked 18th on Baseball America’s Top 500 list heading into the draft while also placing 20th at MLB.com, 21st at ESPN and 23rd at Fangraphs. Malone generally receives praise for a fastball that sits 93 to 96 mph but has reached 99 mph when he needs to, as well as a series of potentially average-or-better breaking pitches that is headlined by his slider. At 6’3″ and 203 pounds, he’s the type of athlete on which clubs can dream as they look down the line. Baseball America wrote that Malone “might have the best combination of current stuff and future projection of any prep pitcher in the 2019 draft class.”