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Dodgers don’t sign first-round pick as deadline passes

The deadline to sign 2018 draft picks past at 2:00 p.m. PT Friday and the Dodgers failed to sign eight of the 40 players they selected. Most notably, their first-round (30th overall) pick, J.T. Ginn.

There were four teams that didn’t sign contracts with their pick and will receive a compensation choice in the 2019 draft, with the pick directly after where they had their selection this year. The Braves (Carter Stewart) will get the No. 9 overall pick next June, the Diamondbacks (Matt McLain) will get the 26th selection, the Dodgers the 31st and the Pirates (Gunnar Hoglund) the 37th.

Over the past six drafts (when the slotted-bonus system started), just seven of 259 first-round (including supplemental) picks went unsigned. All the more surprising that four didn’t sign this year.

Ginn, 19, announced the news Thursday night via twitter that he would be attending college at Mississippi State instead of signing with Los Angeles.

Ginn was ranked the 20th best draft prospect by our own David Hood, and was ranked 39th by Baseball America and 41st by Keith Law of ESPN.

The 6’2 right-hander sounded like he was going to be a tough sign even before the season started.

“I’m really on the fence about it,” Ginn told the Clarion-Ledger in Mississippi. “But if the opportunity to go make some life-changing money presents itself, it’s going to be a hard decision I’ll have to make with my family.”

Apparently 2.4 million dollars — the number reportedly offered to him — is not life-changing.

Overall, the Dodgers spent $5,139,540 which was the least amount in all of baseball. They went above slot on three of their top 10 picks, while going above bonus amounts for two players from rounds 11 through 40.

For picks from the 11th through 40th round, any individual bonus amount above $125,000 counts toward the pool. In 2017 for instance the Dodgers paid a $247,500 bonus to Jacob Amaya, a high school shortstop they drafted in the 11th round. Of that, $122,500 counted toward the Dodgers’ bonus pool.

Second-rounder Michael Grove signed for $1,229,500 (slot was $917,000), third-rounder John Rooney signed for $563,240 ($538,800) and fourth-rounder Braydon Fisher signed for $497,500 ($402,300).