As you will recall, with the #2 pick in last month’s MLB draft, the Cincinnati Reds selected pitcher/shortstop Hunter Greene from Notre Dame High School in Sherman Oaks, California. Greene, an athletic 6’4″ prospect, has been called the best high school right-hander of all time, and he has already appeared on the cover of Sports Illustrated.
As today’s deadline approached without the Reds and Greene reaching an agreement, everyone was getting a little antsy. As reported by the Enquirer‘s Zach Buchanan:
As Cincinnati Reds president of baseball operations Dick Williams prepared to head with the team to Phoenix for the final series before the All-Star Break, it became more and more likely that the team’s negotiations with No. 2 overall pick Hunter Greene could go down to the wire. The Reds have until Friday at 5 p.m. Eastern to sign Greene.
If they don’t meet that deadline, Greene will be unable to enter the pros for at least another year. He could go to a junior college and re-enter the draft next year, or honor his commitment to UCLA and become draft eligible again in three years.
Go read the entire piece (and subscribe to the Enquirer, for crying out loud).
If you were following the drama on twitter, you know that everyone was freaking out. Because the Reds and Greene literally took these negotiations down to the wire. Finally, the news emerged, at 5:01 p.m.:
So there you have it. Greene is in the fold, signed to a contract with a $7.23 million bonus, the highest bonus ever. Exciting times.
And what a relief it is for everyone involved. Can you imagine if the Reds had been unable to get Greene’s signature on a contract? It would be a bad look for everyone involved, as Trent noted.
Of course, it wouldn’t have been a total loss. If the Reds had been unable to sign him, they would have received the #3 pick in next year’s draft, along with whatever high pick they’re likely to earn with this year’s on-field performance. That ain’t nothin’, as they say.
But with all the hype surrounding Greene, the Reds had to get a deal inked. And they did, even if it took every last second for the ink to dry. Whew.