At 11 p.m. CST Monday, the deadline to sign draft picks will pass. By that time, the Royals have to have an agreement with outfielder and fifth overall pick Bubba Starling from Gardner, KS.
Starling was the first position player selected in the 2011 amateur draft after gaining notoriety by being both a football and baseball star with tales of 500 foot homers and 300 yard rushing games. He has scholarships at the University of Nebraska to play quarterback and the outfield, so if he passes up the Royals, he will be in Lincoln for the next three years before another team can select him.
The Royals are likely to offer Bubba, a Scott Boras client, anywhere from $7.5 to $10 million to sign. Eric Hosmer’s $6 million figure in 2008 is the franchise record.
We discussed Bubba and the deadline on the Royalman Report last night and noted that big bonuses usually go down to the end, the next CBA and moving the date up to allow players to get on the field sooner.
But Bubba isn’t the only Royals pick in the spotlight today:
RHP Kyle Smith gave up a scholarship from Florida to sign for a $695,000 bonus after 116 strikeouts and a 0.40 ERA in 69.2 innings earned him a selection in the fouth round by Kansas City.
Patrick Leonard, a third baseman, signed for $600,000. He has a lot of power potential batting from the right side.
According to Jim Callis of Baseball America, third round pick Bryan Brickhouse received a $1.5 million bonus to sign, forgoing a scholarship from North Carolina.
Their second round pick, catcher Cameron Gallagher, signed on August 1 for a bonus around $600,000.
All of the Royals first five picks were high school selections. All but Bubba have signed.
For more on Bubba Starling and the Royals draft: