The Giants have signed their first round pick Will Bednar, per Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle (via Twitter). Bednar and the Giants agreed to a $3.65MM signing bonus, per MLB.com’s Jim Callis (via Twitter). That comes in a little under slot for the 14th overall pick in the draft, which comes with a $4.04MM slot value.
Bednar is a right-handed starting pitcher who won the Most Outstanding Player award for Mississippi State during the College World Series. He used a fastball/slider combo to outduel some of the biggest names in college baseball en route to leading Mississippi State to their first-ever CWS title.
He finished the tourney with a 1.47 ERA with 26 strikeouts in 18 1/3 innings in three starts. In the biggest game of his life, Bednar tossed six no-hit innings to notch the win in the clinching game opposite Kumar Rocker of Vanderbilt.
Prior to the draft, Baseball America had Bednar ranked as the 18th prospect in the draft, while ESPN had him one spot higher. Fangraphs, MLB.com, and The Athletic were less certain of Bednar’s upside, putting him at No. 32 in their pre-draft rankings. Those differences in opinion could at least in part explain the Giants’ ability to save some money in their bonus amount.
The Giants also came in under slot for second round pick Matt Mikulski, who signed for $1.2MM, below the $1.5MM slot value for the 50th pick in the draft, per Callis.
Baseball America and The Athletic had Mikulski projected at No. 39 overall, and Fangraphs had him one spot higher. MLB.com had him a little further down at No. 50 overall. ESPN was the bottom man in terms of their valuation of Mikulski. Kiley McDaniel had him ranked at just No. 99 overall.
The Fordham southpaw reaches back for up to 98 mph on his fastball, but he was a fourth-year senior with some concerns that he might be a reliever long-term. The 22-year-old posted an impressive 1.45 ERA in 11 starts with the Rams last season with 124 strikeouts to just 27 walks in 68 1/3 innings.