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Giolito signs for $2.925 million

Jul 13, 2012, 9:24 PM EDT

Updated at 6:35 p.m.

MIAMI — No stranger to down-to-the-wire negotiations with draft picks, the Nationals agreed to contract terms with first rounder Lucas Giolito less than one minute before today’s 5 p.m. deadline, giving the young right-hander $2.925 million and thus subjecting themselves to a tax for exceeding Major League Baseball’s new draft pool cap.

How close to the deadline did the Nationals get before finalizing the deal?

“Dangerously close,” general manager Mike Rizzo said prior to tonight’s second-half opener at Marlins Park.

Giolito, who turns 18 on Saturday, told the Los Angeles Times he agreed to the deal with only 30 seconds to spare.

As is typically the case, the drawn-out negotiations were over dollar figures. The Nationals felt all along Giolito wanted to sign with them but wanted to receive more than the approximately $2.8 million the club had remaining from its pool of $4.4 million for its top 10 draft choices.
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  1. peric - Jul 13, 2012 at 9:31 PM

    Anyone else signed before the deadline?

  2. Drew - Jul 13, 2012 at 9:31 PM

    So this first-place club can look forward to waves of new talent — Rendon, Meyer, Giolito, Goodwin, Skole, Purke.C'mon baby let the good times roll.

  3. nats guy - Jul 13, 2012 at 9:35 PM

    Drew I think u might want to reconsider on Skole and Purke

  4. greg - Jul 13, 2012 at 9:42 PM

    YAY!!!

  5. SonnyG10 - Jul 13, 2012 at 9:43 PM

    Rizzo priming the pipeline. Yaaaaaaaaaaaa! Hoooooooooo!

  6. Drew - Jul 13, 2012 at 9:45 PM

    Injuries could derail Purke, but Skole sure looks like a promising bat. Boz said so in a recent chat.

  7. A DC Wonk - Jul 13, 2012 at 9:46 PM

    For those who were doubting: Rizzo has a superb and excellent record at getting these deals done. And he proved it once again.

  8. Jim Webster - Jul 13, 2012 at 9:48 PM

    Feel sad for 17-year-olds who have to ride the bus and stay in cheap hotels but can't even have a beer with his buddies …. but $3 eases the pain.

  9. Jim Webster - Jul 13, 2012 at 9:49 PM

    $3m, I mean.

  10. Get Some Players - Jul 13, 2012 at 9:55 PM

    His dad just tweeted how happy he was for his son to join a great organization.

  11. Sunshine_Bobby_Carpenter_Is_Too_Pessimistic_For_Me - Jul 13, 2012 at 9:59 PM

    Another power arm. I love it. More the merrier."WOOOO-HOOOO!!!"(Copyright, MicheleS, 2011).

  12. mick - Jul 13, 2012 at 10:04 PM

    love it!!!!

  13. Firm Possession, My Gorsehacken Sofa - Jul 13, 2012 at 10:10 PM

    Trademark, not copyright. Just sayin.

  14. natsfan1a - Jul 13, 2012 at 10:16 PM

    Good work, Rizzo. Keep fighting the good fight, sec3. ;-)

  15. Ghost Of Steve M. - Jul 13, 2012 at 10:23 PM

    Like I said at 3:33, "Tic tock Luke lock". It was completed early afternoon. Nice!

  16. JD - Jul 13, 2012 at 10:24 PM

    This was very significant; top of the rotation arm. But patience will be required. He will need at least 3 years before he gets to DC. Drew, Skole is almost 23 and in low A ball. Purke and Rendon have had lots and lots of trouble staying healthy. Goodwin is succeeding (not dominating) a level which is too low for a 21 year old college kid. Meyer may be the real deal but he needs to show this at higher levels as well. There is nothing in Potomac, Harrisburg or Syracuse as far as top level talent. The good news is that the major league roster is young and talented but the pipeline is not as deep as you think.

  17. natsfan1a - Jul 13, 2012 at 10:27 PM

    Yeah, I didn't make my mock prediction until 3:31, so I guess I'll have to save my mock victory dance for another time. ;-)I'm going to say that we'll know whether or not he signed in about 90 minutes. Now that I'm out on this limb, where'd I put my saw? ;-)

  18. Fear and Ignorance - Jul 13, 2012 at 10:34 PM

    As a Nationals fan I am happy we got this done. As a friend of 2 guys (smart guys with good grades) who signed out of high school and turned down full rides to great college programs, I hope he makes it. If he doesn't, he will regret this decision the rest of his life…even with the money. Although the money obviously helps. It is a very lonely and hard 3-4 years in the minors. People really don't realize how much you give up by not attending college. Very tough decision for these kids either way. Both of my friends would have gone to college if they had a chance to do it over again. Granted they signed for about 25% of what he got, and probably weren't as good, but the next few years are going to be very tough unless he skyrockets through the system.

  19. NatsJack in Florida - Jul 13, 2012 at 10:35 PM

    JD…..excellent take on the Nats minor league system. The real talent is still in developemental stages and despite what others may say, there is nothing available to push the big club to the play offs. The Nats could use a pitcher better than Lannan or Maya (forget Zack Duke) for the Stras replacement but will probably stand pat.

  20. Kirbs - Jul 13, 2012 at 10:52 PM

    What is the penalties for going over? Is it just a fine, or draft picks? Both?

  21. UnkyD - Jul 13, 2012 at 10:52 PM

    Fear… College isn't going anywhere, for this kid. He's got $3m in his pocket, his folks are well off… If the worst thing that happens to him is that he goes to college at age 23-25…. Like I said on the other thread… I just don't see a downside, for him…

  22. Kirbs - Jul 13, 2012 at 10:52 PM

    I know it says tax, but is anything else included?

  23. Manassas Nats' Fan - Jul 13, 2012 at 10:57 PM

    the only one not to sign as I opredicted was Appell of the Pirates.$3mil if it doesn't work out he goes to college late. I see no down side at all.

  24. Atlee - Jul 13, 2012 at 10:58 PM

    Mark's CSN article says the tax comes to about $75K, so chump change for the Lerners.

  25. Theophilus T. S. - Jul 13, 2012 at 11:00 PM

    I'm surprised. Not certain how happy I am about it but I'm surprised. Part of this is my distaste for high school guys, part of it is his elbow. The thought they might have paid $3MM for Calvin Eppy LaLoosh w/ a bum wing is enough, depending on where you start, to make a man sober or drive him to drink. If he's sound, then the extra $175K would be a no-brainer. But this kid comes "as is," no warranties. My tendency to skepticism overwhelms me; I predict one lost TJ year before he makes it to AAA, probably not earlier than 2015.

  26. Kirbs - Jul 13, 2012 at 11:11 PM

    Yea 75k isn't much of anything in sport terms…it looks like draft picks are lost if the signing is more then 10% for the spot.

  27. Faraz Shaikh - Jul 13, 2012 at 11:22 PM

    Good job Rizzo! Glad we got it done.

  28. Firm Possession, My Gorsehacken Sofa - Jul 13, 2012 at 11:44 PM

    I predict one lost TJ year before he makes it to AAA, probably not earlier than 2015. You may well be right, Theo, and even if he had the health of the cheerleader in Heroes, he probably won't be up before 2015 or 2016 anyway. I don't wish it on him, but TJ is far from the end of careers; just the opposite in many cases. So it's not so bad, even if you are actually optimistic.

  29. Firm Possession, My Gorsehacken Sofa - Jul 14, 2012 at 12:16 AM

    Giolito was 9-1 as a senior at Harvard-Westlake.Who beat him? Did we get that guy?

  30. Snivius - Jul 14, 2012 at 12:24 AM

    Looks like the Nats/Rizzo caved on their resolve not to pay fines for draft bonuses….So this young genius came 30 s from either:1) blowing an entire year away from the big league salary progression (to the tune of $10mil plus lifetime earnings)– assuming he's the real deal-or-2) risking the possibility that he gets re-injured over the next 12 months, earning little to NOTHING in a draft…. all for $100-200k into the penalty zone and banking that Rizzo would blink.It's not like they were MILLIONS apart. This brinksmanship just seems stupid, and could have gone wrong.

  31. Firm Possession, My Gorsehacken Sofa - Jul 14, 2012 at 12:32 AM

    More than a year, actually. If he goes to UCLA he can't be drafted next year either.

  32. MicheleS - Jul 14, 2012 at 1:11 AM

    Another WOOOO HOOOO! (copyright/Trademarks, yup)Welcome Little GIO!!!

  33. Gonat - Jul 14, 2012 at 3:50 AM

    "Done with 30 seconds to spare". Sure. Makes for great dramatical effect from a Hollywood family.

  34. Nats In Athens - Jul 14, 2012 at 5:55 AM

    This draft showed in the most dramatic fashion that our loophole of signing good players above slot is now shut tight. If we want to stay competitive we need to bolster our international presence, including building up a good Dominican operation and signing top Cuban talent.

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