LOS ANGELES - The Dodgers' top three picks from the June Draft are still unsigned, and the deadline to get it done is Friday at 2 p.m. PT.The slot money for first-rounder Jeren Kendall, an outfielder from Vanderbilt, is $2,702,700. For second-rounder Morgan Cooper, a pitcher from the University of
LOS ANGELES - The Dodgers' top three picks from the June Draft are still unsigned, and the deadline to get it done is Friday at 2 p.m. PT.
The slot money for first-rounder Jeren Kendall, an outfielder from Vanderbilt, is $2,702,700. For second-rounder Morgan Cooper, a pitcher from the University of Texas, it's $1,018,200. And for third-rounder Connor Wong, a catcher from the University of Houston, it's $537,100.
The Dodgers are roughly even with the recommended slot salaries for their next seven picks, so they have about $4.2 million remaining in its bonus pool to distribute to the trio. The club would be entitled to a compensatory pick in next year's Draft if a pick goes unsigned, but MLBPipleline.com expert Jim Callis said all three are expected to agree to a deal.
:: 2017 MLB Draft coverage ::
A club that outspends its pool by 0-5 percent pays a 75-percent tax on the overage. At higher thresholds, teams forfeit future selections: a first-rounder and a 75-percent tax for exceeding their pool by more than 5 and up to 10 percent; a first- and a second-rounder plus 100-percent tax for more than 10 and up to 15 percent; and two first-rounders and 100-percent tax for more than 15 percent. The Draft Tracker lists all signings and bonuses.
Kendall, 21, bats left-handed and throws right-handed. He is 5-foot-10 and 180 pounds and has elite speed but a high strikeout rate. He hit .307 (80-for-261) with 10 doubles, five triples, 15 home runs, 53 RBIs and 20 stolen bases in 2017 as a junior for Vandy. He led the team in runs scored (59), hits and home runs, while posting a .372 on-base percentage and a .556 slugging percentage. In 2014, he was drafted in the 30th round by the Red Sox, but went to college.
Cooper, 22, is 6-foot-5 and 210 pounds. He went 6-3 with a 2.32 ERA with 110 strikeouts in 89 1/3 innings this year as a starter. Cooper missed the 2015 season following Tommy John surgery, but bounced back strong this year.
Wong, 21, is 5-foot-11 and 180 pounds, built like current Dodgers catcher Austin Barnes because the Dodgers value smaller, agile, athletic catchers who they can refine as receivers. Like Barnes, Wong has basestealing speed and a plus throwing arm.
Ken Gurnick has covered the Dodgers since 1989, and for MLB.com since 2001.