This weekend, the Chicago Cubs officially announced a couple signings, one of which was new: 17th rounder Kelvin Freeman.
Freeman, a senior first baseman at North Carolina A&T, had the kind of huge offensive numbers you’d expect from a senior college first baseman who gets drafted. He was the MEAC Player of the year, a third team All-American, and tied for 9th in the NCAA for homers this year (16). (That really puts Kris Bryant’s 31 into further context, yes?)
Freeman will need to hit extremely well if he’s to keep moving up the ladder for the Cubs, assuming he’s stuck on first base. Although his bonus has not been reported, it will not be higher than the $100,000 limit (before it impacts your bonus pool) for draftees in rounds 11 through 40.
Jim Callis reported the signing bonus for 6th rounder Scott Frazier, about whom I wrote last week, and whose signing the Cubs officially announced in tandem with Freeman’s. That bonus for Frazier? $267,600, which is the slot value for where he was selected. Frazier, a starter at Pepperdine, was considered by many to be a top 100 overall talent in the Draft, so Callis was impressed that the Cubs got him in the 6th round (especially for a mere slot signing bonus).
Getting bonus information for Frazier is very helpful as we continue to estimate/evaluate/etc. the money the Cubs will have available in their bonus pool to sign first round pick Kris Bryant, as well as over slot players in the later rounds. I wrote at length about where the Cubs stand financially on Friday, and you can now incorporate Frazier’s bonus into that equation.
With Frazier getting slot, the Cubs remain about $250,000 over their bonus-pool-limit-plus-5%, meaning they are technically in the red zone for risking losing a future first round draft pick. I’m still not worried, however, as the Cubs need only sign Bryant for slightly under slot, and they can quickly be back in a safe range.