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  • #76
    (15 459 Kobie Taylor) The Texas Rangers gave Kobie Taylor a lot of good reasons to begin his career in professional baseball.

    Hundreds of thousands of them.

    Taylor, the 18-year-old Portsmouth High School standout and 15th-round pick in the Major League Baseball draft earlier this month, will be on an afternoon plane to Arizona on Tuesday, reporting to his new job just four days after his high school graduation.

    His decision to sign with the Rangers Monday capped a year-long weighing of the benefits of college at Division I power Vanderbilt, where he had more than half a full athletic scholarship waiting, versus jumping right into a career in the minor leagues.

    By signing a pro contract, he loses his eligibility to play college baseball.

    “There’s been a ton of thought put into this,” said Taylor, a Greenland resident, on Monday night. “My parents, my agent, my family. Now that it’s done, there’s zero regrets. … I think (my parents) might be more excited than I am.”

    His agent, Jim Munsey, said the total financial package, between his signing bonus and money for college, which he can use within two years of his retirement from professional baseball, is more than $600,000.

    “It’s not the typical process to get this kind of money,” said Munsey. “It just took a little bit longer.”

    Taylor’s path, to a certain degree, mirrors the one followed by St. Thomas Aquinas outfielder Ryan McKenna, who signed after the Baltimore Orioles drafted him in the fourth round in 2015, forgoing his scholarship to Liberty (Va.) University.

    Munsey said that Taylor will be assigned to the Rangers’ Arizona Rookie League team in Surprise, Ariz., a spring training facility they share with the Kansas City Royals. The team is comprised largely of high school draft picks and Dominican players.

    ‘The idea is (for him) to get to full-season (Single-A) ball next year,” said Munsey.

    The Rangers’ Single-A affiliates are located in Spokane, Wash. (short-season); Hickory, N.C.; and Adelanto, Calif (advanced).

    Taylor wrapped up his high school career in anti-climatic fashion last week, his team losing to Souhegan, 2-1, in the Division II championship game. Between a season-opening seven-game suspension and a broken thumb, he batted just 12 times, getting one hit. A center fielder whose tools include a strong arm, speed, hitting and hitting for power, he’d been named to Division II All-State teams in each of his first three years.

    He was hoping to be picked within the first 10 rounds of the draft, where signing bonuses are generally larger, though the seven-figure ones dry up after the first few rounds. Munsey said the New York Yankees, Minnesota Twins and Detroit Tigers were the other teams showing strong interest in drafting the potentially-signable Taylor.

    Rounds 10-15 are a gray area for drafted players, especially ones with a strong college option. If the money isn’t right, they can opt to go to college and become draft-eligible again a few years down the road.

    But there’s also a clock in baseball, with organizations typically having more patience with 18-year-old draft picks than ones who are 22.

    In a Seacoast region with only a handful of guys currently playing baseball professionally, the news made a splash Monday.

    “I think it’s awesome; I couldn’t happier for him,” said his former Portsmouth High School teammate Kyle Maurice, after playing an American Legion game for Exeter Post 32 on Monday. “You couldn’t ask for anything better. It’s what you dream of as a kid.

    “From what I got, it seemed like he wanted to go pro. But he still wanted to keep (the Vanderbilt scholarship) as an option. But it seemed like he was pretty set on going.”

    “When they picked him, they said, ‘We’re picking you in the 15th round with the intention that we want to sign you,” said Munsey.

    They did on Monday.

    “It was definitely the best feeling I’ve ever had,” said Taylor. “Better than the draft. Better than anything.”

    Vanderbilt's 2016 baseball signing class took a hit on Monday as outfielder Kobie Taylor chose to sign a professional contract with the Texas Rangers.

    The 6-1, 175-pound centerfielder out of Portsmouth, Rhode Island signed for reportedly a total value of more than $600,000. His agent, Jim Munsey told on Monday night that the package includes Taylor's signing bonus and post-retirement money for college.

    Named a third team Rawlings Perfect Game All-American in 2016 after being named to several all-tournament teams over the last several years.

    Rangers feel they got a sleeper in Taylor

    Going into his senior season at Portsmouth High in New Hampshire, Rangers 15th-round pick Kobie Taylor was viewed as the best high school prospect in the state, and one of the top prep outfielders in the country.

    MaxPreps top high school baseball player in each state for 2016

    New Hampshire
    Kobie Taylor, Portsmouth, 6-0, 175, Outfield

    Already committed to play at Vanderbilt, Taylor has made the Division II all-state team several times Was a member of Portsmouth's state championship team in 2013.

    BA New Hampshire #1. Kobie Taylor, of, Portsmouth (N.H.) HS (National Rank: 259)
    Last edited by mingjungtc; 06-21-2016, 06:40 AM.


    • #77
      (24 729 Kenneth Mendoza) Asked about his emotions only hours before boarding a flight for Arizona and rookie league baseball, Clearview's Kenny Mendoza said: "Excited, nervous, scared ... and ready."

      Mendoza, taken in the 24th round with the 729th pick in the MLB Draft, signed a contract with the Texas Rangers Tuesday morning. He was scheduled to fly to Phoenix at 6 p.m. Wednesday.

      Mendoza said he was keeping terms of the deal "private."

      "The Rangers told me it was above what a 24th pick usually gets," Mendonza said.

      The deal also includes money for college. Before deciding to turn professional, Mendoza was a Campbell University recruit.

      "The decision between going pro and college was difficult," said Mendoza, a 6-foot-4, 230-pound, left-hander. But I feel like I made the right choice. This way, I can go to school on my time and at my pace."

      Mendoza, who pitched only 22 innings as a junior, became the ace of the Clearview staff. He went 9-1 with a save.

      "He's the first player drafted in my 24 years so I'm excited as is everyone affiliated with our program," said Clearview head coach Rocco Cornacchia. "When the season started, I wouldn't have anticipated him becoming the No. 1 pitcher on our staff, but that's what happens with a lot of hard work.

      "With each outing he got more and more confidence. He wasn't afraid to pitch inside to right-hand hitters."

      Mendoza, who has a fastball in the low to mid-90s, became more of a pitcher and less of a thrower this spring.

      "He developed a two-seam fastball that he turned over a little bit and it had screwball action," Cornacchia. "He was able to throw that pitch right at a righty hitter and it would tail over the inside corner. It became an effective pitch and he developed a slider as the season went on."

      Mendoza finished the season with three shutouts and a 1.13 ERA.

      "The Rangers told me they are going to work on my delivery a little bit and they like my arm action," Mendoza said. "The want me to develop and off-speed pitch and work on making by delivery more consistent and repeatable.

      "I'm ready for whatever they want me to do," Mendoza added. "In April, I may have throught this was possible, but only because I was a late bloomer. I couldn't have imagined how this feels."

      Mendona was one of 37 New Jersey high school or college players to be selected in the MLB Draft, which was held June 9-11 in Secaucus. Pitcher Tyler Mondile from Gloucester Catholic signed with the Cincinnati Reds and Toms River North third baseman Joey Rose came to terms with the Arizona Diamondbacks. Both were assigned to minor league camps in Arizona.


      • #78
        Jim Callis ‏@jimcallisMLB
        18th-rder Marcus Mack signs w/@Rangers for $175k ($75k vs pool). Texas HS OF, speed is best tool. @MLBDraft


        • #79
          The Rangers went above their threshold for draft pick bonuses and will incur a 75 percent tax on the overage.

          The club was allotted $5,358,500 in bonuses for their first 10 round picks and any bonuses exceeding $100,000 in the rounds thereafter. With the signings of outfielders Kobie Taylor ($350,000) and Marcus Mack ($175,000), the Rangers went about four percent or $200,000 beyond their allotment. Teams that exceed their bonus pool by less than five percent are assessed the tax, which comes out to approximately $150,000. In addition, the Rangers agreed to significant college tuition costs for both Taylor, the 15th rounder, and Mack, the 18th rounder. Future tuition costs do not count against the bonus amount.

          The Rangers have signed 33 of their 40 picks, including their first 24 selections. They are not expected to sign anybody else.


          • #80
            Kyle Boddy @drivelinebases
            Nice little velocity mound session. @HerbieGood's last heater for a strike. Sitting 96-97. @Cheatcode07 93-95 in same session.

            Tepid Participation @TepidP Jan 2
            The Rangers drafted Herbie Good and he chose not to sign, opting for a JUCO. Hope they take him again, because...Herbie good.

            101.2 mph


            • #81
              (Google Translate) Some adjustments in his momentum, new position in defense: the Quebecer Charles Leblanc learns the hard in the organization of the Rangers of Texas.

              Under the hot Arizona sun, Leblanc takes part in the team's extended training camp in the town of Surprise.

              "What's positive for the players who end up in affiliate baseball is that they have the chance to play," noted Leblanc. I do not play on a regular basis, but I still have the opportunity to practice with several quality coaches. It's different."

              At the end of the phone, we can guess that the young man from Laval, aged 20, is not the perfect happiness, but he trusts the organization.

              "The Rangers are renowned for the development of the players, estimated the one who was a choice of fourth round in the draft of 2016. Looking at the walls of the various facilities, one sees that they take a pride by displaying the names of the guys Who have been in their organization and who play in major baseball. "

              More power

              More specifically, Leblanc needed to make some changes in his batting momentum. Yet, before landing at the Rangers, the Quebecker struck for an average of 405 for the University of Pittsburgh team, winning the batting championship of the prestigious Atlantic Coast Association (ACC).

              "To summarize, I'm still a big guy and I'm being asked to strike with more power," said Leblanc, who had grown to be a player multiplying hits.

              "It's a team effort," the young man added. As a hitter, you have to be comfortable, but it's important that the coaches also like your momentum. "

              And that's where the mental aspect comes in. You have to be confident even when things are not so good.

              Third goal

              The situation is also perilous in defense when Leblanc, who grew up as a short-handed player, finds himself used more in the third cushion. He even worked at some point at the first goal.

              "You have to be comfortable in more than one position," said the athlete. In the Rangers, you become a front-runner, not just a short-stopping player. "
              A return to spokane?

              After the prolonged Texas Rangers camp, Charles Leblanc still does not know where he'll end up.

              The option of re-entering the Spokane Indians' training, for the short season at A level, is likely to continue from mid-June. Leblanc obviously hopes to be recalled earlier, at a higher level.

              "The goal when you're in the minor is to move forward," he said. Yes, it would be a bit flat, but I would be more comfortable [than last year] if I went back with the Indians. "

              In 61 games, Leblanc nevertheless retained an average of, 285 in Spokane. He led his team to the hits (65), triples (4) and points counted (36).

              "I'm satisfied with my first professional experience, but honestly, I can do even better."