Red Sox sign fourth-round Draft pick
OAKLAND -- It took until the last possible day to sign Draft picks, but the Red Sox locked up fourth-round selection Myles Smith, the lone holdout of Boston's top 10 picks, on Friday.
The Red Sox also signed shortstop Mauricio Dubon (26th round), outfielder Nick Longhi (30th round), third baseman Rafael Oliveras (35thround), and right-handers Pat Goetze (36th round) and K.J. Trader (39th round).
In total, the Sox signed 27 of 40 players, including each of their first 12 picks and 18 of their top 19 selections.
Smith was the 113th overall player selected in June's First-Year Player Draft after the Mets took him in the 16th round the previous year.
The right-hander transferred to Miami Dade College in 2012 and moved on to Lee University in Cleveland, Tenn., an NAIA power, last season. With a fastball that can touch 97 mph and a solid changeup, Smith dominated at Lee, but to make it to the big leagues, he will need to improve his command.
"His arm has grown, meaning how much velocity he's gained in it so quickly that I almost think his command and his body hasn't caught up to it yet," Mark Brew, Lee's head baseball coach, said in June.
Smith is listed at 6-foot-1, 170 pounds and his slight frame and erratic breaking ball may push him back to the bullpen as a professional. Brew thinks Smith has the ability to start professionally, but he will need to adjust to the higher level of competition.
"On our level, he just overwhelmed people with his ability, and you know at that level that's not going to be the case," said Brew. "He's going to need that command and that ability to locate his fastball."