Blue Jays to sign third-round pick Adam Kloffenstein well over slot value

The Blue Jays have taken a very different approach to this year’s draft than we’ve seen from the Mark Shapiro and Ross Atkins regime over their first two rounds at the helm. Rather than going with safe, projectable college seniors, the Cleveland Boys have gone heavy on high school players.

They used their first-round pick on Jordan Groshans then, in the third round, they selected his teammate from Magnolia HS righty pitcher Adam Kloffenstein.

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Here’s what MLB.com has to say about him:

Magnolia (Texas) features the best hitting prospect/pitching prospect duo in high school baseball. Shortstop Jordan Groshans may have hit his way into the first round, while Kloffenstein could go as high as the second. He kicked off the summer showcase circuit last June with a strong two-inning outing as the first pitcher to take the mound at the Perfect Game National, and he hasn’t let up since. Kloffenstein can work in the low 90s with heavy sink on his two-seam fastball and hit 96 mph with his four-seamer. He has advanced feel for a breaking ball, showing the ability to morph his sharp slider into a bigger-breaking curveball or a harder cutter. He also has a deceptive changeup with tumble that lacks consistency but also can be his best pitch at times. At 6-foot-5 and 220 pounds, Kloffenstein has a frame built for durability and also the room to add some more strength. He’s athletic and repeats his delivery well, allowing him to throw strikes. He’s a tough competitor who can get overly animated on the mound, but the only real knock against him is that he may difficult to sign away from Texas Christian.

Baseball America had Kloffenstein as their No. 35 prospect while FanGraphs had him at No. 42. After the first day of the draft, he was right at the top of the “best available” picks heading into day two. There’s been a lot of writing about Kloffenstein and Groshans possibly getting drafted together in the first round as teammates. You have to wonder if the Jays drafted the two of them as a package deal.

Anyways, Kloffenstein appears ready to sign.

Per The Star-Telegram…

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Top TCU recruit Adam Kloffenstein, a right-handed pitcher from Magnolia High School, was selected by the Toronto Blue Jays with the No. 88 overall pick in the third round of the major league draft Tuesday afternoon.

Two sources confirmed the Blue Jays are offering Kloffenstein a first-round level signing bonus of about $2.5 million, and he will forgo his commitment to TCU.

The slotted amount for the No. 88 spot is just over $650,000. The Blue Jays are offering almost $2 million more than that.

Like I said, it seems likely the Jays had some kind of package deal worked out between these two teammates. Groshans was selected higher than projected and he’ll likely sign for under slot, while Kloffenstein was selected lower than projected and he’ll sign for over slot.

  • The Humungus

    I thought the same thing when I saw this draft pick. Maybe they gave them both the same $$$ in the deal. The combined slot value for them is $4,852,900, so half each would be $2,426,450 (which I’d call $2.5M if I was a writer trying to get the news out fast).

    • The Humungus

      To add:

      Groshans was ranked 31, which has a slot value of $2.2M, Kloffenstein was 43, which carries a slot of $1.9M

      If they had gone there, even with a split, that’s a nearly half million each they lose. If this is the case, it’s brilliant. Especially because Kloffenstein is a goddamned beast who won’t even be 18 until August.

  • The Humungus

    Secondarily, doesn’t it make sense that the Jays are taking more high school players early now? The upper levels of the minors are starting to be populated with guys they’ve taken in the past few years, and they’ve done an outstanding job of raising the floor of the entire farm system, so it makes perfect sense that once the floor is raised, it’s time to start pushing up the ceiling as well.

    They’re never going to go balls deep on “raw, high upside athletes”, as is evidenced by some of their picks today (and even the Conine pick yesterday), but there is definitely a slight alteration to their philosophy now that the system is in good shape with less-risky college guys (like Biggio and Clemens) and some good developments from some of AA’s last couple drafts and his high-upside prep arms.

    I’m pretty stoked on it, because it really gives me hope that the plan is to just be a continuous talent factory rather than hoping for “winning cycles” based on “golden generations” coming out of the farm system together.

    • DAKINS

      That’s my thoughts on this as well. I’m thinking they want to create a more constant flow of talent through the system, rather then waiting for a time to push all the chips in. We all saw the downside of that at the major league level last season and now, this one as well.