Owen Murphy, Braves reach deal
The Atlanta Braves signed first round pick Owen Murphy to his rookie deal, meaning Murphy will not be attending Notre Dame. The right handed pitcher/ third baseman will join rookie camp (like all draftees) next week.
The Baseball Side of This Deal
There is still some uncertainty around whether or not Murphy will play both sides of the ball, but the talent is clearly there. In his senior year, Murphy posted a 0.12 ERA with 137 strikeouts in 58 1/3 innings. Murphy also hit .548 with 18 homers. Murphy also threw four no hitters, two of which were perfect games.
On the mound, Murphy is a stand-out product. As just a pitcher, he was likely to go during the competitive balance pick round. Murphy features a five pitch mix. A high velocity fastball, hitting 96 — at 18 years-old — a plus slider, a change up, and curveball that he will look to find more consistency with at the pro level. In my interview with Owen Murphy he talks about his cutter. Murphy has extremely large hands that he uses to flick the ball and create high spin rates. High spin on a cutter and fastball make it look as if the ball is rising on its way to the plate.
At the plate, Murphy was projected as a 3-4th round pick. He is a plus fielder at third, obviously with great arm. At the plate he showed that he stays in his mechanics well, as more of a pull hitter. You won’t see Murphy hit 40+ bombs, but he is extremely reliable in clutch situations and is always good for a base knock.
The Logistical Side of This Deal
The 20th pick in this year’s MLB draft is slotted at $3,407,400. I can not confirm if Murphy was above or below slot. However, in their trade with the Royals, the Braves acquired $2,202,100 in draft pool money. Baseball draft deals are unlike other sports where players can be paid more to keep them from going to college or returning for a senior year.