O's second-rounder Hughes opts to attend college
A few hours in advance of today's 5 p.m. ET Draft signing deadline, Orioles second-round pick Jonathan Hughes has declared his intention to attend Georgia Tech rather than turn pro.
Ranked No. 188 on MLBPipeline.com's Top 200 Draft Prospects list, Hughes was the No. 68 selection, which carried a bonus-pool value of $907,000. Baltimore will receive the 69th overall pick in the 2016 Draft as compensation for not signing him.
A 6-foot-2, 184-pounder from Flowery Branch (Ga.) High, Hughes can hit 96 mph with his fastball and usually settles in at 89-93 with some cutting and sinking action. His low-80s slider has its moments, and he also throws a curveball and changeup.
Hughes is the highest unsigned Orioles pick since Rice right-hander Wade Townsend turned down the club as the No. 8 overall pick in 2004.
Six other players taken before the third round remain unsigned: Vanderbilt shortstop Dansby Swanson, the No. 1 overall pick of the D-backs; Vanderbilt right-hander Walker Buehler and Louisville righty Kyle Funkhouser, both Dodgers first-rounders; Virginia left-hander Nathan Kirby, the Brewers' supplemental first-rounder; Eustis (Fla.) High righty Brady Singer, a Blue Jays second-rounder; and Kentucky righty Kyle Cody, the Twins' supplemental second-rounder.