Phillies sign Julian Sampson

I love being wrong about things like this, but the Phillies handed over the money and got the deal done. Per Baseball America

There were two above-slot signings of late-round picks. The Phillies landed Washington high school righthander Julian Sampson (12th round) for $390,000, while the Rangers locked up California prep righty Kyle Ocampo (13th round) for $250,000.

MLB wants picks after the fifth round to receive no more than the last slotted bonus in the fifth round, which was $123,300 this year.

So far, so good. If it was only going to be one of either Sampson or Workman, I wanted Sampson, so this is a good start.

55 thoughts on “Phillies sign Julian Sampson

  1. if they were willing to go to $390k for Sampson, I have a hard time believing that they weren’t willing to go to $350k for Workman.

  2. I think Workman’s college commitment was unbreakable. Money probably wasn’t the hang up. Maybe he believes he can come out for the draft in 3 yrs and be a 1st round pick and receive millions instead of a couple hundred thousand plus enjoy college. Also, maybe the phills realized this to and that’s why they took him where they did knowing they would recoup that pick if they couldn’t sign him.

    Overall AWESOME job on this signing!!
    This and Russel Branyan hits a game winning homer!! Wow our organization might actually be legit. Might.

  3. Actually, money is the hangup. If you believe the folks comments who have posted here the last few days who seem to have a connection to Workman, he told the Phillies what it would take, and they keep offering slot money instead.

  4. There’s very little point in overpaying for Workman if you have a compensation pick available. You give him over-slot if and only if he’s an over-slot talent. If he isn’t, you let him walk.

  5. I am sorry but I refuse to believe this organization would not cough up the money to pay over slot for Workman. I mean they just aren’t a cheap, say one thing and do another, excuse filled organization.

  6. why would they go more than $250k over slot for Sampson and refuse to budge on slot for Workman? I agree with Nick, I think management took exactly the right strategy here (and I am by no means a Gillick apologist).

  7. By the way, from a personal standpoint, all of this stuff about signing draft picks is somewhat amusing.

    If my son were good enough to get drafted, but had a full ride scholarship to a top school, there is almost no way in the world I would advise him to sign. I’d let him grow up, experience college, get a free education (what’s that worth these days, $200-250k? It’s a lot of money) and tell him that if he’s really good enough to play pro ball, he’ll be drafted as a college student and he can make the decision again later. If he’s not good enough to play pro ball, one day he’ll thank his lucky stars that he went to college and started his life the right way rather than getting side tracked in Williamsport for two years.

    I am not saying it’s impossible I’d ever encourage my kid to skip college and go play pro ball, but, as much as I love baseball, I’d be hard pressed to envision a set of circumstances where I would do that.

    This is why you haven’t heard anyone talk about the kid from the Philly prep school. He doesn’t need the money and his family values education. I bet the decision was very easy for them.

  8. Maybe Sampson is better than Workman. Scouts said the Phillies drafted Workman a little high where they did. Sampson, on the other hand, has been described as closer to a second round talent. The equation for them may be that Workman is simply not worth 500K.

  9. H Man. You’re right. I guess it’s selfish for fans to talk about these kids like a commodity. Given the cost of higher education these days, allowing our national pre-occupation with sports to buy you scholarship, housing, and whatever – I guess we shouldn’t be so anxious to bribe them into abandoning that to please our desire to follow a winning team. We should, I guess, hope that they all make the right choices for them, signing, not signing, or even demanding a lot to replace what they’ll give up.

  10. Most of the time these guys are getting college scholarships along with their signing bonus. You go play baseball for a few years, and then if it doesn’t pan out, you go to college for free. Can’t think of anything I would rather do with my twenties.

  11. Obviously, the existence of a college scholarship, along with the ability to attend college for the fall semester each year, would be one important factor that could tip the balance in favor of signing a contract. I can think of worse things than being a college student for half of the year and a pro baseball player the other half of the year.

    Also, on occasion, student are able to cut deals with big league teams that allow them to attend school full time and just play over the summer. Examples include Curtis Pride (top NCAA soccer player and serious student – he made it to majors) and Ricky Williams (legendary first round NFL football pick, occasionally great pro running back, full-time head case, former Philly farm hand, and summa cum laude graduate of ganja university).

  12. To fans feeling bitter and let down about the Workman pick, I just want to say, let it go. Sometimes negotiations just don’t work out. It seems to me that both sides had a back-up plan: Workman has his scholarship, the Phillies have a compensation pick. In the end, neither side should feel especially jilted, even if certain conditions were communicated ahead of time. The Sampson signing (well above slot) proves that the Phillies are serious about spending money to develop talent. Frankly, some of that money can be considered a Public Relations expense, since losing both picks would have lit a fire of controversy. Meanwhile, the sandwich pick next year probably will have just as much of a chance to help the Phillies as Workman. All in all, this was a good draft and fans should be satisfied.

  13. I kind of understand that logic, but here’s my problem. The Phillies called him before the draft. He gave them a figure he’d sign for. If they didn’t feel like they were going to give him that much, why take him there? Why not try and take a similar upside guy who they could sign? Sure, the compensation pick is nice, but it will be 20 or so picks later next year, not the exact same pick. It’s frustrating, because it’s squandering a resource.

  14. Welcome Julian Sampson! As a Phillie you have a great opportunity to move quickly thorough the system. Look at Kyle Kendrick. Other clubs would not have given him the early opportunity he got here, which has to energize all the young pitchers in the system. Good luck.

  15. The pick isn’t really squandered since, as you pointed out, the compensation pick pretty much takes the sting out of it. 20 picks lower is nothing when it comes to the crapshoot that is the MLB draft. Besides, no matter what Workman said ahead of the pick, it is all just negotiation. Perhaps he was bluffing. Perhaps they thought he would reconsider once he was picked– it is much easier to dictate terms before you’re picked than afterwards, when you’re faced with a real choice. Perhaps the Phillies even tried splitting the difference. You just never know. I think Workman might regret his decision more than the Phillies, though going to college is never a bad thing. Now, if they had gotten absolutely nothing for him, a la J.D. Drew, then I’d be singing a different tune. Meanwhile, Drew is not the difference-maker that everyone assumed he’d be and there’s no reason to assume Workman will be, either.

  16. I didn’t know that about Curtis Pride, and it’s pretty amazing. I can almost comprehend how a seriously hearing-impaired person could still excel at baseball. I don’t understand at all how one could excel at soccer.

    As for the Phillies pre-draft conversation with Workman, do any of us have any hard evidence as to what was said by the two parties at that time?

  17. I’m seeing comments like “let down about the workman pick” and “squanderinf a resource”. Has there been some word that Workman isn’t going to sign?

    Signed,

    Optimistic in Philly…

  18. Its not like he’s turning down a Harvard education, the kid is rejecting over half a million dollars in cash to go to a state school. That $600,000+ is more money than most people accumulate in their lifetime, and I’m sure the Phillies would’ve accomodated any request to go to school in the offseason. If anything, NOT taking the money is viewing the kid as a commodity, that might rise in value over time. Going to Texas, he isn’t guaranteed a penny for the rest of his life. His scholarship isn’t even guaranteed- if he blows out his arm, gets poor grades or loses focus amid all the distractions of college, he won’t be the first, or the last star high school athlete to lose their free ride.

  19. Nice counterarguments about taking the money and working out a deal to go go school in the offseason. I’m still pretty sure I would not encourage my child to do that, but it’s a fair argument. But, you know, there is something to letting a kid who can go to college be a kid, enjoy that experience and, at least for a few years, grow up and get some education.

    As for Curtis Pride, I was a little off, but not much. Pride was an All American soccer player in high school, but he did not play soccer in college. Rather, he played varsity basketball in college at William and Mary, played pro baseball part-time and graduated with a degree in finance. He must be one hell of a guy.

  20. I agree with H man on both accounts: (1) I would definitely advise my son to go to college when he was 18-21: and (2) Curtis Pride was (and I presume still is) a great guy.

  21. Kevin Goldstein likes the Sampson signing

    JM (MD): The Phillies, in a surprise move, went over slot for Julian Sampson. What can you tell us about him?

    Kevin Goldstein: It didn’t cost them a ton — really about third round money for a guy that one scout I know pegged as a second-round talent. Tall, skinny guy with a good fastball that could become better, and already a plus breaking pitch. Good sign.

  22. Either the Detroit Tigers are without conscience or they are singularly obssessed with greatness. Or maybe they are just a team with economic long term vision. But the largesse of the Phillies (Sampson signing) pales in comparison.

  23. The fact is Workman was never offered more than $288k. No other offer was tendered in part because the Workman’s made it very clear that he would not sign for less than $350k so there was never a reason to bring in an offer that was less.

    Additionally, the Workman’s are well off financially and both parents are college educated. Given this, they made the decision of what they thought his education was worth and weighed that against the amount of money he was offered. They believe that if he is going to make it to the majors then he will make it, and if he is not then the $200k he would clear after taxes was not worth delaying or possably eliminating his college education. In reality most kids who delay going to college until they are 22-23 do not end up graduating.

    This being said, we will all have to wait a few years to see who made the correct decision, The Phillies or the Workman’s. I do know that it will be fun watching Brandon concentrating solely on becoming the the best pitcher he can be. Not only has the kid never had any pitching lessons, but up until now he spent as much time being a quarterback, a shortstop or a hitter as he did a pitcher. He is exceptionally smart, has a good work ethic so I think the sky is the limit for him. I’m sure I am joined by all of you in wishing him the best!

  24. So if I am reading this right, and Texan is who he says he is (meaning his facts are straight) – the kid isn’t going to sign, and the reason he isn’t is that the Phils wouldn’t pony up and extra $62K. Now I don’t toss around $62K very easily but in the grand scheme that’s nothing. Something seems odd about that, especially since they went a fair bit of slot for Sampson

  25. Best wishes to the Workman family whatever they decide. The future looks bright for Brandon either way. From this fans perspective, it would be great to have him sign and become part of a very good crop of young Phillies pitchers in the lower minor leagues. With a lot of hard work he might even make it to the Show sooner than he could finish a bachelors degree. This negotiation may seem difficult and the extra $70,000 may seem like a lot of money now, but if Brandon has what it takes to make good, there will be much higher sums and much harder negotiations in the future. Take it all with a grain of salt and keep your eye on the prize, Brandon! Don’t let the business side of baseball knock you off stride! Good luck whatever you decide.

  26. Yup, Ced Johnson also signed according to the Phillies.Com Press Release section.

    I am not really betting on Workman to sign, but is there any chance on Mike Adzick agreeing to terms?

  27. Actually, I think the Phillies are more likely to sign Workman than Adzick though according to the posters in this thread who seem connected to the situation that doesn’t seem very likely either.

    Although I love the signing of Sampson and like the signing of Johnson, does it seem odd that the Phillies wouldn’t meet 350K for Workman (assuming that’s his number). I’d rather sign Workman for an extra 62K than take a comp pick in next year’s draft (like to be aroun 120) where the Phillies might take a 5th year senior.

    All in all, a very good day for the Phillies. Since the press release went out, however, I suspect we are done.

  28. You know him very well texan?? How well, im just curious i mean no harm…best friend? Cousin? Girl-friend? Father even? Plus does the Hook ‘Em mean that he’s not signing with Philly? What if they do in fact offer him the $350k in say an hour will he sign with Philly? Also i hope that this deal is being worked out with the Phillys and the kid, not the Phillys and his parents. The kid, excuse me, young man is 19, this is his dream let him live it. It’s time he makes a decision for himself. PLus if his paretns are well of and he skips college to play for our club and something happens to him, then they (his parents) could afford to send him to college, maybe not Texas but to college none the less.

  29. BA just posted 4 players that have no chance of signing and Workman is not 1 of them. Heres the post:

    Four hours before the midnight deadline for signing draft picks, 23 players selected in the first five rounds have yet to come to terms. Teams are negotiations with several of those draftees, but according to BA sources and reports by correspondents, these players have no chance of signing:

    Second round: RHP Joshua Fields (Braves), 1B Hunter Morris (Red Sox).

    Third round: RHP Tommy Toledo (Padres).

    Fourth round: OF Kyle Russell (Cardinals).

    Fifth round: RHP Kyle Blair (Dodgers).

  30. I left a pretty in-depth message on an archive on your review of the phillies draft–and now most of questions are answered (as all it took was for me to NAVIGATE YOUR SIGHT– dumb-ass Savant)

    I’m very curious as to why you think Sampson has more upside than Workman. Sampson was a top signee of WASHINGTON (did Gillick have any Seattle knowledge of him??–i’m pretty sure he was at a tourney in Washington a month or so ago) & Workman was a h/s all-american and a top signee of an elite program in Texas.

    Let’s hope they open the $500-$750k it will take to get Workman. It would add some BIG depth to our pitching staff.

    and to add to your Bill Conlin remark, I spent 4 hrs last month going thru the DREADFULL history of the PHILLIES for the 10yr period until Jimmy and Chase. (I mean how can we get Burrell #1, Drew #1 and Gavin Floyd #4–Jeff Jackson not included.)

    find out when C.C. SABBATHIA was taken out of Caly High School (12th-16th pick i think)

    great work.

  31. Wow! You guys are all rediculous! The kid wants to be a long horn, let him. He will probably not amount to anything. Why do people think that just because you are a high draft pick (by the way the draft is a crap shoot, one guy likes you for some reason and all of the sudden you are a second rounder), that you will make the big leagues! Do you have any idea how many kids and grown men are competing for 12 spots on a big league pitching staff? do you know how many 1st, 2nd, 3rd,…30th rounders all have the same stuff? Its a matter of opportunity, and if the kid wants to miss his opportunity and go play 3 or 4 seasons for Soggy Burrito in Austin, then let daddy “texan” give him ajob at his law firm in a couple of years. Hey, everything is bigger in Texas, mostly just egos! Good Luck with Auggie!

  32. Baseball America has quoted that Sampson was a mid-2nd round talent pretty consistently (knowing there is a sandwich round probably). I think he was rated #43 nationall on their list of HS prospects before the draft. Workman was rated 3rd round or even a little lower. This is nothing about Texas vs. Washington as programs. Sampson is a little more polished at this stage. Both have great arms. In terms of upside, Sampson is a little taller and maybe a little more projectible for his fastball (like Mathieson).

  33. I found H Man’s comments about encouraging kids to not sign and attend college to be interesting. Personally, specifically, if my kid was a pitcher I would try my best to convince him not to go to school (except on the team’s dime in the offseason) and to sign a contract if he was a 5th rounder or better.

    Colleges will abuse arms frequently because the school’s success is their greatest interest. Pro teams will limit pitch counts and do everything to help you succeed – their investment in you is their greatest interest.

  34. Here’s a little something on Cedric Johnson, who evidently was headed to BYU before he signed.

    Cedric Johnson, 6-2, 175, is an outfielder from Thatcher, Ariz., who is the younger brother of current Cougar Leon Johnson. His older brother Elliott was just put on the 40-man roster for the Tampa Bay Devil Rays and played for its AA club. Leon is a three-time draft of the Devil Rays. Cedric was all-state as a sophomore when he batted .484. He was injured part of last year and played on the White Sox Scout team in Tucson this past Fall. With the Indiana Breakers last summer, he led in every offensive category, batting .484 again. He was recruited by Arizona and Purdue and is recuperating from his second knee surgery (ACL).

    “Cedric came to our Summer Elite Camp and really performed well,” said Law. He is very athletic and has a plus arm from the outfield. He can really run and makes contact at the plate very well. He has drawn a significant amount of professional attention and we expect him to turn into a big prospect. Cedric played centerfield for the Chicago White Sox Scout Team last fall and is expected to be a high pick in the June draft.

    “I get to play with my brother if he doesn’t sign with Tampa Bay,” Cedric told an Arizona newspaper.

    http://www.byucougars.com/Filing.jsp?ID=8510

    If nothing else, I think we might have ourselves a future candidate for the Reggie Cleveland All-Stars.

  35. It’s been said before but it bears repeating: grading a draft is almost pointless until about five years have passed. Drafts are mostly luck after the first three rounds and even the first three rounds produce many more flame-outs than stars.

    Look back to 1999 when the Phillies drafted Jason Cooper in the second round with the the 63rd overall pick. Cooper didn’t sign and went to Stanford instead. Eight years later, Cooper is stalled in AAA Buffalo (Indians) and may never get so much as a cup of coffee in the show.

    On the other hand, in that same 1999 draft, the Phillies also failed to sign Joseph Saunders, a big lefty HS starting pitcher selected 156th overall. He, too, went to college and two years later he was drafted again by the Angels in the 1st round, 12th overall. Saunders is a solid fourth starter with the LA Angels now, 6-1 with a 3.51 ERA, one of about 170 players from that entire draft to ever make the show from the 1999 draft.

    In the ten years from 1991 – 2000, the annual average of players drafted to eventually sniff the big leagues is just 200, which doesn’t take into account players drafted twice like Saunders. What’s more, the great majority of these are not impact players.

    Five years after the 2002 draft, just 100 players selected have made it to the show according to the Baseball Cube.

    Workman might be one of the fortunate few who are in the bigs 5 or 7 years from now, but the odds are against him. There’s just no reason to blow a gasket about not signing him, especially since the Phillies have a compensation pick next year.

    Personally, I have no complaints about this draft. Now if you want me to vent, ask me about the Placido Polanco trade…

  36. I went both to middle school and high school with Julian. Great guy, outstanding player. He will truly be an asset to the Phillies both in performance and integrity.

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