According to Charlie Goldsmith of the Cincinnati Enquirer, first-round pick Rhett Lowder and the Cincinnati Reds have agreed to terms on a contract.
Goldsmith reports that the signing bonus is for $5.7-million, which comes in almost $600K below the $6.28-million slot-value for the No. 7 overall pick in the 2023 MLB Draft.
The money saved will surely help the Reds to ink the likes of high school talents like shortstop Sammy Stafura and pitcher Cole Schoenwetter.
Reds 1st-round draft pick Rhett Lowder reportedly signs under slot-value deal.
Rhett Lowder was the Atlantic Coast Conference Pitcher of the Year in both 2022 and 2023. His performance this season for the Wake Forest Demon Deacon propelled the right-hander to the top of most draft boards, and the Cincinnati Reds pounced on the opportunity to select Lowder with the seventh-pick in the draft.
Lowder is seen a mature prospect who could fly through the Reds farm system in similar fashion to what fans have seen Andrew Abbott do this season.
Lowder possesses a sinking fastball and slider, but it's his plus-changeup that had all the scouts talking this past spring. Lowder's three-pitch mix will undoubtedly keep him tracking to be a starter as he looks to climb the ladder to the major leagues.
Each team is allotted a bonus pool of money that they're allowed to spend for signing draft picks. Each pick made in the first 10 rounds is assigned a slot-value. Teams that exceed the bonus pool face a penalty. According to MLB.com, the Cincinnati Reds' allotment this year totaled $13,785,200.
By inking Rhett Lowder to an under-slot deal, the Reds will now have more money to spend in order to sign some of those high school players that have the option to honor their college commitments. While Sammy Stafura and Cole Schoenwetter are likely to sign, the same cannot be said for 20th-round selection Gabe Gaeckle.