2nd, 3rd-rd. picks sign; Ford agrees (source)

July 23rd, 2021

SEATTLE -- The Mariners signed their second- and third-round picks from the 2021 MLB Draft on Friday, and they agreed to terms with their first-rounder, a source told MLB.com.

Here’s a breakdown of the numbers, which were first reported by MLB Pipeline’s Jonathan Mayo:

C Harry Ford: $ 4,366,400 (full slot for No. 12 pick)

SS Edwin Arroyo: $1.65 million (slot is $1,543,600 for No. 48 pick)

RHP Michael Morales: $1.5 million (slot is $733,100 for No. 83 pick)

Arroyo and Morales conducted their physicals on Friday at T-Mobile Park and put pen to paper. Ford will conduct his Tuesday. All three selections will head to the Mariners’ Spring Training facility in Peoria, Ariz., for the rest of the summer and will report to a Minor League affiliate in 2021.

The most prominent development was Morales signing for more than double his slot value. With a scholarship offer to Vanderbilt University, the nation’s top collegiate pitching program, the right-hander was expected to sign for well above the pick’s value. Entering the 2021 season, he was touted with as high as a second-round projection before experiencing diminished velocity this spring, which caused him to tumble. In that context, Morales was believed to have a high asking price for whatever club selected him.

“Honestly, I'm looking forward to Arizona -- being able to kind of get to work, meet the staff, get after it a little bit, dive into the pitching end a little bit,” Morales said. “I'm intrigued, definitely eager, to hear what the Mariners now want to do with me moving forward, to be able to find what we're definitely looking for as in velocity, stuff like that; hopefully make the changeup a little bit better and really just mature in their system.”

Mariners director of amateur scouting Scott Hunter suggested last week that the club was going to get creative with its $8,526,000 bonus pool allotment. For example, fourth-rounder Bryce Miller signed for $400,000, which is $112,400 below slot value.

Ford was expected to sign for slot, coming out of North Cobb High School in the Atlanta suburbs as the top high school catcher in the class.

For Arroyo, Friday represented the culmination of his journey from Puerto Rico to the U.S. He and his family relocated to the Orlando, Fla., area ahead of his senior year explicitly to up his competition level and Draft exposure.

“We found a school, my parents found a job, so we were pretty comfortable,” Arroyo said. “I have a sister, she was in the school, too. And I had a really good season, and I think I learned a lot on that season. I think moving to Orlando was a really good thing for me.”

The wide-grinning 17-year-old is the second Mariners' Draft pick this year to mention their eagerness to meet Edgar Martinez. Ford said that he mimicked a batting practice routine of the Hall of Famer that involves hitting with a donut on his barrel. And Arroyo said that he has immense respect for Martinez as a fellow countryman.

“It makes me so proud,” Arroyo said. “And here in Seattle, that you guys got Edgar Martinez. That’s [going to be] a really good experience.”

With Friday’s agreements, the only picks that have yet to agree to terms are right-hander William Fleming, taken in the 11th round out of Wake Forest, and Troy Taylor, the 20th-round pick, who has an offer from UC Irvine that he is considering.