Hogs Signee Hancock Still On Hold

FAYETTEVILLE -- One of Arkansas baseball's top signees continues to hold out on signing a professional contract after being selected in the third round of last week's Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft.

Kyle Hancock, a 6-foot-3, 185-pound right-handed pitcher from Rowlett, Texas, was taken by the Colorado Rockies as the 87th overall pick. From talking with scouts prior to the draft, he was expecting to go much earlier.

"We're definitely weighing our options right now," Hancock said. "Not that I was disappointed with being drafted, I was just told some things that led me to believe that things would go a little better. Most every scout I talked with said I wouldn't make it past the second round, so I'm not sure what happened.

"But we've set some standards and we'll see how it goes."

As in most professional negotiations, those standards are monetary. Hancock said he turned down the Rockies' original offer of $400,000 and also turned down a counter offer of $430,000.

"The compensation will have to be late first-round or second-round money to get me to go," said Hancock, who last talked with a Rockies' representative on Wednesday. "We don't have an exact dollar figure, but from talking with people and advisors, they say I deserve to get that kind of money because that was where I should've been drafted."

Hancock said he doesn't anticipate the negotiations running into August like some have with past draftees. In fact, he plans to have it wrapped up in the next couple of weeks.

"I'm wanting to make a decision, not quick, but quick enough to let all the coaches and people in Fayetteville to know what I'm doing," Hancock said. "They've been great to me and I think it's fair for me to make a decision soon.

"(The Rockies) definitely know what school means to me and what going to Arkansas would mean to me. Arkansas put a huge scholarship offer on the table and if (the Rockies) can't match what we want, I would have no problem going to school instead."

This season, Hancock was 12-1 with a 1.13 ERA while striking out 144 in 70 innings. His fastball tops out at 94 mph, but it's his diving curveball which makes him such a a hot commodity. In fact, several draft experts say Hancock sported the best high school breaking ball in the draft.

Hancock said he's been relieved the Razorbacks' coaches have not put any added pressure on him to make a decision.

"I was just up at my high school working a (youth) baseball camp and was talking about that," Hancock said. "Not once have the coaches said I need to go to school or that this is what you need to do and that's the main thing they've did for me that's been so awesome.

"They've been behind me and supported me and been really more to me than just coaches."

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