2011 Draft: Yankees sign fifth rounder Greg Bird for $1.1M


Update (Aug. 15th): Via zoodig, the Yankees have inked Bird for $1.1M, which is some serious dough. It’s easily the most they’ve spent on a player this year, topping Jake Cave’s $825k bonus by more than 30%. They must really like his bat. Jim Callis confirmed the report, in case you wanted to see one of the regulars report it.

Original Post (Aug. 13th): Via Keith Law, the Yankees will sign fifth round pick Greg Bird to a signing bonus north of $1M. The exact amount is unknown, but KLaw says it’s in the seven figures. Baseball America (subs. req’d) says that Bird, a high school catcher/first baseman from the Denver area, “has good bat speed and gets plenty of loft and backspin on the ball” with his left-handed swing. He’s a big dude (6-foot-4, 210 lbs.), and is expected to wind up at first base. Bird was committed to Arkansas and his bonus will be the largest the Yankees have given out this year, surpassing the $750k they gave Dante Bichette Jr.

Categories : Asides
  • Pants Lendelton

    Well damn !

  • Jeety

    With Williams, Culver, Gumbs and Bichette’s early success… Im tempted to trust the Yankees judgment…

    Besides get em signed and playing and some of them will probably work out

  • Tyrone Sharpton

    What’s his ceiling Mike?

    • Mike Axisa

      All I know about the kid is what’s in the post. Lefty power is always a good thing though.

      • Pants Lendelton

        In this case … It’s a very significant thing since after Corban Joseph , this system doesn’t really have many left handed power bats in it.

      • Howard Cosell

        Mike in your opinion, IF his signing bonus is higher than Bichette does that mean that the Yankees she him as a better prospect than Bichette and basically they equated him to a first rounder?


        • Mike Axisa

          Yes and no. The money usually tells you how much they like a player, but I don’t think it necessarily means they view him as a first rounder. I do think they like him more than Bichette, but perhaps believed they could get Bird in a later round than Bichette.

          • Howard Cosell

            Than I think what you’re saying is what I thought – that they think he has 1st round ability and skills and thus warrants the bonus of a 1st rounder. Otherwise it makes no sense giving 1st round money.

            Net result: They scored big time( at this point) just like with Bettances by getting a first round/2nd round talent in the later rounds due to sign-ability.

            So in my mind, This is the Yankees #1 pick at this point…..Bichette being their 2nd rounder.


  • crawdaddie

    Based on that bonus, I’m thinking they’re thinking of him being more than a first baseman.

    • bonestock94

      Or a first baseman with the appropriate bat

      • crawdaddie

        Or trying him at catcher first.

        • Charles

          Do we really need more Catching prospects? Isn’t Montero/Sanchez/Romine enough?

          • crawdaddie

            Catching is a premium position. Bird is 4-5 years away. A lot can happen in that time frame. Players don’t make it, prospects traded and injured.

          • JMK

            Do we really need more Catching prospects?

            Yes, all organizations do.

            Isn’t Montero/Sanchez/Romine enough?

            No. There’s a good shot Montero really isn’t a catcher; Sanchez doesn’t have a great defensive reputation, is large and is very far away from the big leagues. Romine may work out, but this is by no means a guarantee. What if he can’t hit a lick or his defense doesn’t adjust?

            Remember when Texas had Salty, Max Ramirez, Taylor Teagarden, etc.?

        • bonestock94

          Doubt it based on what BA says. If the position is already in question I’d bet they’re throwing the big bonus at him over the bat.

          • crawdaddie

            Yet, the Yankees announced his selection as a catcher.

            • bonestock94

              I find it hard to believe that a 5th rounder is getting a big bonus for a skill set that has already been thrown into question. Agree to disagree I guess.

          • Aman22

            They are drafting Greg purely on his bat. The kid can flat out rake. Pretty slow and not that good defensively. Also a great kid with an awesome family background

            • thecapt

              I know Greg personally and this is a good take. The kid can flat out hit the ball. Pitch it near the K zone and it has a chance of going yard every time. He was my son’s HS catcher and I see him as a DH/1st baseman. Great family and it has been a pleasure knowing him and I look forward to his success. Pure and simple, I was raised a Mets fan, but I’ll start rooting for Greg and the Yankees now!

  • Gonzo

    This makes me wonder what they have up their sleeve for Monday.

  • mr.jigginz

    Bird IS THE WORD…Dayummmm.

  • Tyrone Sharpton

    “im back from the physical. I leave in a couple of days. Im hyped. Hows motor city?!” -Jake Cave’s Twitter

    Looks like the Yankees keep getting quality talent! I ? Cave

    • Tyrone Sharpton

      “Baseball player. Just got picked up by the Yankees.” Also from his twitter description. OmG

  • Jim Penney

    Youtube Greg Bird and check out some of the highlights of him. He looks like a man playing amongst a bunch of boys. I also think he looks a lot like Joe Mauer.

    • Aman22

      Much better swing then Joe Mauer. Gets in a lot better posistions through out the swing and will provide a lot more power and consistency year in and year out.

      • Stuckey

        Uh, am I reading this right. Did you just write “much better swing” than the guy who hit .365/.444/.587.1.031 as a catcher a year and a 1/2 ago?

        • William Rawls

          Yeah totally, a guy that has a better swing than Mauer lasted all the way to the 5th round. I totally believe that.

        • pat

          Lulz. That’s what I was thinking. A better swing than a three time batting champ? Must be pretty good then.

  • Jesse

    Bird is the word.

  • Skip

    I had my hopes set on Stafford. I guess we’ll find out soon enough why it didn’t work out.

  • Avi

    Heyman reporting Pirates have signed Josh Bell. Don’t understand how the Yanks passed on him.

    • William Rawls

      Not only that. Dillon Maples signed, and so did Purke!

      • Avi

        You mean Dillon Howard right? Purke’s shoulder sounds like it’s shredded. Daniel Norris signed with Toronto. He’s another guy I loved at #51 for the Yanks. Blake Swihart got 2.5MM for Boston. Remeber his name, could be a top hitter.

        • William Rawls

          No, I mean Dillon Maples. A guy the Yankees were linked to and that lasted till the 14th round. Signed for big money. :(

      • Zack D

        Purke was throwing 85 this year, he better have signed.

    • pat

      Every other team in baseball passed on him.

      • Avi

        Every other team in baseball doesn’t have the money the yankees do.

      • Avi

        Would you rather have two years of Pedro Feliciano for $8MM or Josh Bell for $5MM?


    I liked this Bird blurb from BA:

    “Bird hit .660 with 13 home runs as a junior and was even intentionally walked six times in one game. Grandview head coach Dean Adams said Bird is ‘by far the best hitter I have ever coached and seen’ and called him ‘a teaching tool for other kids’ because of how fundamentally sound he is.”

    • MikeD

      Obviously the Yankees agreed.

      Interesting that he got $1.1 million. It takes leverage and a willingness to walk away. He must have had both and the Yankees must think highly enough of his talents that they didn’t want to lose him over a few hundred thousand.

    • thecapt

      I was at that game. Once was with the bases loaded. Sr yr he walked almost as many ab’s (at bats, not plate appearances). Teams were simply afraid to pitch to him. He was top 5-8 in the US in homers for HS soph-sr yrs. He’ll be worth the $

  • Nuke Ladoosh

    Bird and Bichette Killer B Redux 2015