MLB Draft Top Pick Adley Rutschman, Orioles Agree to Record $8.1M Contract

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistJune 24, 2019

Adley Rutschman catches for Oregon State against Washington State Oregon State Washington during an NCAA baseball game on Friday, April 26, 2019 in Corvallis, Ore. (AP Photo/Chris Pietsch)
Chris Pietsch/Associated Press

The Baltimore Orioles have reportedly signed No. 1 overall draft pick Adley Rutschman to a signing bonus worth $8.1 million, according to Jon Heyman of MLB Network.

Baltimore Orioles @Orioles

We've got our man. #Birdland https://t.co/Ig1Trh2hGf

The bonus is the largest of its kind, breaking the previous record of $8 million set by Gerrit Cole in 2011.

The first overall pick came with a slot value of $8.42 million, per MLB.com, leaving the Orioles the opportunity to spend the rest of the money on their other picks.

The team's second-round pick, Gunnar Henderson, signed an overslot deal worth $2.3 million, while third-round selection Zach Watson remains unsigned.

While this represents an important haul for a team desperate for talent, getting Rutschman signed was a must considering his overall talent.

Jim Callis of MLB.com argued he was easily the top catching prospect in the past decade, while some scouts rated him even more favorably to Buster Posey and Joe Mauer:

"Adley Rutschman has everything scouts want in a catcher. He's a switch-hitter who's a monster at the plate, capable of hitting for plenty of average and power while drawing a ton of walks. Behind it, he has a strong arm, impressive receiving and blocking skills—plus leadership ability off the charts."

He is coming off a dominant season for Oregon State, hitting .411 with a .575 on-base percentage and adding 17 home runs in 57 games. He earned 76 walks while only striking out 38 times as one of the most feared players in college baseball.

With an advanced skill set, Rutschman has a chance to rise quickly through the minor leagues and make a positive impact for the Orioles before too long.