Rockies sign 1st-rounder Rolison
Club also agrees with 25 other selections from the 2018 Draft
PHILADELPHIA -- The Rockies and left-hander Ryan Rolison, the 22nd overall pick in the first round of the 2018 Draft who helped Ole Miss into NCAA Regional play this season by striking out 120 in 97 1/3 innings, agreed to terms on Wednesday, the club announced.
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According to Jim Callis of MLB Pipeline, Rolison signed for the full slot value for the 22nd pick -- $2,912,300.
Rolison, 20, was eligible for the MLB Draft as a sophomore, and became the third player in Ole Miss history to finish with 10 wins and 100 strikeouts in a season. He was drafted out of high school by the Padres in the 37th round of the 2016 Draft, but did not sign and attended Ole Miss.
The Rockies will send Rolison to their Rookie-level squad in Grand Junction, Colo., which starts its season on Friday. Bill Schmidt, the Rockies' vice president of scouting, said the Rockies' player development staff will keep a close rein on Rolison's innings this summer as he and the coaches become acquainted.
The Rockies love the lefty's pitch mix and competitiveness.
"He's got stuff, to start with," Schmidt said. "His fastball is going to be competitive at the Major League level, he's got a plus breaking ball, and the ability to throw strikes with all four of his pitches gives him a chance to pitch on a Major League staff. What role he eventually fulfills, that will develop over time.
"We scouted him in high school and liked his stuff. We knew it was going to be tough to get him out of his commitment to Ole Miss [in 2016], then we watched him the last two years in college and watched him in the Cape Cod League. Just the way he competed on the mound, the way he pitched and went about his business, we felt he had the ability to be a productive Major League pitcher."
Rolison is the 10th collegiate pitcher the Rockies have taken with their first pick in the Draft. They've selected 20 first-round pitchers, including seven left-handers -- current rotation members Kyle Freeland (2014) and Tyler Anderson (2011), plus Tyler Matzek (2009), Christian Friedrich (2008), Jeff Francis (2002) and Doug Million (1994).
The Rockies did not confirm the bonus figure, nor did they announce financial terms with other picks that have been signed.
According to the club's press release, 26 draftees total have signed. That includes picks from six of the top 10 rounds -- Ohio State right-hander Ryan Feltner (fourth round); UCLA right-hander Jacob Bird (fifth), Loyola-Marymount outfielder Niko Decolati (sixth), LSU left-hander Nick Bush (eighth) and Oklahoma outfielder Cade Harris (10th).
According to Callis, Feltner signed for $434,700, which is his pick's slot value.
Decolati, who will move to the outfield from third base, signed for $249,600, according to MLB Pipeline's Jonathan Mayo. The 14th-rounder, left-handed pitcher Will Tribucher of the University of Michigan, signed for $125,000, according to Callis.