According to a team release this morning the Jays have signed both of their first round picks from last month’s draft, RHP Jeff Hoffman (9th overall) and C Max Pentecost (11th overall). So that sound you hear is the hamster wheels that drive the brains of the suckhole types eager to pounce on some phony ready-made narrative about the Blue Jays fumbling their way through negotiations with children having to switch direction and find something new to whinge about.
According to a Jon Heyman tweet, Hoffman is getting slot money for where he was selected ($3.1-million), and according to a tweet from Ben Nicholson-Smith, the same is true for Pentecost ($2.9-million).
Truth be told, there was some speculation — at least around here — that Hoffman might be singable for less than slot, given the status of his injury. He’ll be only about a year removed from the Tommy John procedure he had this spring by the time the next draft rolls around, so little would have changed regarding the uncertainty over him, and he would have then been a college senior, with an insistence on heading to independent ball his main bit of leverage.
Hey, it worked for James Paxton, but fortunately it’s not a road the Jays and Hoffman will have to travel. Plus, with allowances for clubs to spend over their pool allotments before being penalized, slot money isn’t really slot money anyway. And that’s good, because at MLB.com, in declaring the Jays draft night’s big winners, Jim Callis notes that there are still several interesting but difficult-to-sign players that the Jays took after the tenth round — including four who made his list of the top 200 draft prospects — and may still be able to scrape together some money for.
But don’t hassle the Hoff, man. Even if the Jays don’t nab any of those guys, there is reason to be pretty happy about not just the additions of Hoffman and Pentecost to the system, but about the exorcising of the ghosts of Paxton and Tyler Beede and Phil Bickford… at least for another year.
Image awesomely via Crashburn Alley.