Tigers Complete Draft Day Signings

On the final day MLB teams were able to sign their 2007 draft picks, the Tigers made a big splash, signing three players all well above their 'slot' recommendation for nearly a combined $10 million.

The prize of the group, and the most notable was of course Rick Porcello, who came to terms with the Tigers late Monday night.

Porcello, the 6' 5" right hander from New Jersey, signed a four year, $7.28 million major league contract. This means Porcello is immediately placed on the 40-man roster, and starting in 2008, the team will have to use Porcello's options to keep him in the minor leagues.

To clear space on the 40-man roster, the Tigers designated former first round draft pick Kyle Sleeth for assignment.

The Tigers snagged two other players that were considered much more talented than where the Tigers drafted them; fifth round pick Casey Crosby, and sixth round pick Cale Iorg.

From day one, the Tigers and Crosby were very confident they would come to terms on a deal, rumored to be somewhere around $700,000 to $750,000. Crosby had to be patient and wait until the final day, but the Tigers did indeed bring Crosby into the fold for the stated amount.

Meanwhile, the infielder Iorg was an interesting case, in that he hadn't been on a diamond in the past two years, but was widely regarded by many as a first round talent.

After evaluating him after his return from his Mormon mission, the team believed he was worthy of a contract typically reserved for a first round pick, and the Tigers were able to ink Iorg, for a cool $1.5 million.

Of course, none of this sat well with the MLB brass, as all three signings were well above the 'slot' recommendations.

But, as Dave Dombrowski made the case, the ultimate goal of the organization was to bring in as much talent as possible, and not signing these individuals would be turning away top talents. Their signing bonuses were simply reflective of their talent levels and an amount they deserved.

The time may come where Major League Baseball will put strict rules around what a team can pay their draft picks, however, until that day arrives, only guidelines are given, and the Tigers were under no obligation to follow those guidelines, so long as they felt the money handed out was worthy of that player's talent level.

The Tigers wrapped up their draft class, inking nine of their top ten picks (the only one not to sign was 10th rounder Dominic de la Osa), including bringing in arguably the top high school pitcher in the entire draft, plus two more players with first-round caliber draft.

Just another day at the office for Dombrowski, David Chadd, & Co.

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