The Phillies have signed 2020 draft third-round pick SS Casey Martin
Ahead of the August 1 deadline, the Philadelphia Phillies have now signed all four of their draft picks from this month’s amateur draft.
After signing fourth-round pick RHP Carson Ragsdale, fifth-round pick OF Baron Radcliff and first-round pick RHP Mick Abel, the Phillies came to terms with their third-round selection on Thursday — infielder Casey Martin out of the University of Arkansas.
Martin, 21, signed for $1.3 million, exceeded his No. 87 overall pick slot value of $689,300, according to MLB.com’s Jim Callis, who writes the shortstop is “one of best athletes” from the draft with “plus raw power, 70-80 speed on 20-80 scale, quickness and arm.”
Phillies 2020 draft pick signing bonuses (slot value)
- Round 1, 15th overall pick | RHP Mick Abel $4.1M ($3.9M)
- Round 3, 87th overall pick | INF Casey Martin $1.3M ($689K)
- Round 4, 116th overall pick | RHP Carson Ragsdale $225K ($498K)
- Round 5, 146th overall pick | OF Baron Radcliff $100K ($372K)
The Phillies had been interested in the 21-year-old right-handed hitter since high school, his collegiate alma mater’s head baseball coach Dave Van Horn told reporters. Entering the draft, Baseball America ranked Martin as the 38th-ranked prospect, while MLB.com ranked him as the 30th best.
In a recent podcast interview, Phillies general manager Matt Klentak says the team was “really excited” Martin fell to them in the third round.
“We did not go into the draft expecting that Casey Martin would get to our third-round pick. When he was there, we were thrilled to take him,” he says.
This past fall, Martin required hamate bone surgery, which contributed to him falling from round one to round three. Had Martin played a full season this year, or performed as he did as a freshman or even better, Klentak says he has doubts he would have still been available for the Phillies to pick: “There’s some reason to believe that had we not had the pandemic, there’s no chance he makes it to pick No. 87, which is where picked him in the third round.”
While a member of the University of Arkansas Razorbacks baseball team, also known as the Diamond Hogs, Martin helped them to back-to-back trips to Omaha, Nebraska, the College World Series, for the first time in school history.
Over 148 games and three seasons with the Diamond Hogs, he slashed .310/.389/.542 with 40 doubles, 30 home runs and 116 RBI. Entering his recent, short-lived junior season, he was rated as the No. 3 shortstop in D1 Baseball’s Preseason Position Power Rankings, as well as the Preseason All-SEC First Team Shortstop (Coaches), among other honors.
The shortstop told reporters he is open to a position change if needed, having previously also played in the outfield, second base, and third base growing up. Van Horn says Martin can play “just about anywhere.”
Klentak agrees, saying “there’s a lot of different paths that a player with this toolset can take.”
“That is appealing,” he continues. “I think that’s part of the reason that players who are defensively limited to a single spot often are not quite as in demand in the draft as someone with more versatility unless they possess an elite bat. Elite bats tend to go high regardless.”