The Tigers announced Friday that they’ve signed No. 3 overall draft pick Jackson Jobe and No. 39 overall pick Izaac Pacheco. That pair of signings comes just a few days after the Tigers locked up No. 32 overall pick Ty Madden. Jobe received a $6.9MM bonus that clocks in $322K under slot, reports Jim Callis of MLB.com (Twitter links). He adds that Pacheco signed for a $2.75MM that is about $850K over slot.
Jobe, a high school right-hander out of Oklahoma, was something of a surprise pick to many onlookers. He’s regarded as having one of the highest ceilings in the draft and drew praise as the top high-school pitcher in this year’s class, but prep pitchers have a particularly high attrition rate as prospects, so there’s some risk to the selection.
That said, it’s also easy to see why the Tigers were so drawn to him. Jobe ranked seventh on the pre-draft rankings at ESPN and at MLB.com, eighth at Baseball America and FanGraphs, and 16th at The Athletic. ESPN’s Kiley McDaniel wrote that Jobe “might be the best prep pitching prospect in years.” The righty draws 60 to 70 grades (on the 20-80 scale) on three different pitches. Listed at 6’2″ and 190 pounds presently, Jobe was also his high school team’s shortstop and is regarded as an excellent all-around athlete. The history of high school pitchers in the first round, particularly right-handers, isn’t great — but Jobe himself is a highly appealing prospect.
Pacheco, meanwhile, checked in at No. 22 at The Athletic, No. 30 at MLB.com, No. 36 at BA, No. 52 at ESPN and No. 65 at FanGraphs. He’s played shortstop in high school and was committed to Texas A&M. Most scouting reports on him feel he’ll settle in as a power-hitting third base prospect, which isn’t a huge surprise for an 18-year-old already listed at 6’4″ and 225 pounds. MLB.com’s report suggests that he could have more raw power than any left-handed hitter in the draft.
The Tigers have saved a bit of money on Jobe and some down-the-board picks (rounds four, five, six and eight, specifically). Those savings don’t quite balance out the over-slot deals for Madden and Pacheco, but the team could still save a bit of money on some of its yet-unsigned selections. It’s also worth remembering that they can exceed their bonus pool by up to five percent before being penalized with the loss of future picks. Detroit had the second-largest bonus pool at $14,253,800 total, so they could exceed that pool by up to $712K. Given that flexibility, they should be able to sign the rest of their picks without much issue.
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