7:40PM: The Mariners have also signed second-round shortstop Edwin Arroyo and third-round right-hander Michael Morales to above-slot deals, according to Mayo (Twitter links). The 48th overall pick has an assigned price of $1,543,600, but Arroyo (a Florida State commit) signed for $1.65MM. Morales had been committed to Vanderbilt, but he’ll now begin his pro career after seeing to a $1.5MM bonus that is more than double the $733.1K slot price for the 83rd overall pick.
3:54PM: The Mariners have agreed to sign 12th overall pick Harry Ford, MLB.com’s Jonathan Mayo reports (via Twitter). Ford signed for $4,366,400, matching the slot value assigned to his pick.
Ford is an 18-year-old high school catcher from Georgia, and he’ll now begin his pro career after being originally committed to attend Georgia Tech. Ford was the consensus choice as the draft’s second-best catching prospect, behind only Henry Davis (who went to the Pirates as the first overall pick). Draft pundits all had Ford within roughly the same range on their rankings, with The Athletic’s Keith Law placing Ford highest at eighth, while Baseball America was comparatively the lowest at 17th.
While Ford was drafted as a catcher, there is some doubt he’ll remain at the position — not necessarily due to a lack of ability behind the plate, but rather because Ford is a good enough athlete to potentially fit at multiple other positions. Ford has 60-grade speed and also a plus throwing arm that some scouts feel could make him a possible future option as a center fielder. At the plate, Ford has excellent bat speed and is very strong, making him a good candidate for more power potential in the future.