Yesterday reports swirled that the Royals had agreed to terms with Christian Colon, the fourth overall pick in the 2010 draft. Today, those reports are confirmed by the official announcement that Colon has signed with the Royals. The signing bonus amount hasn’t been announced yet, but was expected to be around $2.8 million – consistent with past bonus amounts for that position in the draft.
UPDATE: Bob Dutton reports a few details: The deal contains a $2.75 million signing bonus, and is not a Major League contract, so he will not be on the 40 man roster.
Colon will be assigned to Wilmington within the next week and a half to play most of the second half of the minor league season. Ideally, jumping right into action should help him adjust to the professional game quicker and set him on a fast track to the majors. All the buzz coming out of the Royals front office points to their confidence that Colon will be able to remain at shortstop as he advances.
The general scouting report on Colon tells us that he doesn’t have any one elite skill, but he’s solid and balanced and also has a reputation of strong leadership. Many say he gets the most out of his abilities and works hard. Some comparables already at the major league level are Placido Polanco and Ronnie Belliard. He’s drawn some comparisons to Derek Jeter for his leadership ability and hustle, though that’s obviously a best-case scenario, and he doesn’t have the speed or range of Jeter (or at least what Jeter USED to have).
The ease of the signing does benefit the Royals as they work to sign the rest of their draft class. In years past, most of their first-round picks would wait until the signing deadline, requiring a lot of time and energy that could have been dedicated to other signings and scouting. The Royals also signed third-round pick Michael Antonio out of high school yesterday, so they can now direct their attention to second rounder outfielder Brett Eibner and pitchers Kevin Chapman and Jason Adam, selected in the fourth and fifth rounds, respectively.