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Red Sox reach agreement with Ranaudo

08.17.10 at 12:00 am ET
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The Red Sox signed supplemental first-round pick (No. 39 overall) Anthony Ranaudo to a $2.55 million deal just before the midnight deadline to strike deals with 2010 selections. Until the last moment, Ranaudo had been prepared to return to Louisiana State University.

According to one source, the Sox had ‘€œno clue’€ about whether they would be able to convince Ranaudo to turn pro until the final minutes before midnight. But in the end, the team did just that with a pitcher who entered the 2010 season viewed as potentially the top available college pitcher, but whose stock slipped due to injury and poor performance.

But Ranaudo proved that he was healthy again with a dominant performance in the summer Cape League, thus convincing the Sox that he was worthy of a bonus in line with one of the top players in the draft, as indicated by the bonus (the largest ever given by the Sox to a college player not on a major league deal). Ranaudo, who is advised by Scott Boras, received a deal for roughly three times the MLB slot recommendation for a player taken at his spot in the draft. The bonus figure is roughly in line with the MLB slot recommendation for the No. 5 overall pick.

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Red Sox, Hernandez far apart

08.16.10 at 8:11 pm ET
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According to a baseball source, there is growing pessimism about whether the Red Sox will be able to sign 7th rounder Chris Hernandez, a left-hander out of Miami. The Sox and the junior remain far apart at this point. While a deal has not been ruled out (in the same way that the Sox were able to find middle ground with Brandon Workman), the Sox are considering reallocating the money they’d earmarked for the Hurricanes’ Friday night starter on other draftees with whom they are still in talks.

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Bill Lee to pitch for Brockton Rox

08.16.10 at 7:45 pm ET
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Bill Lee, 63, signed a deal with the Brockton Rox of the Can-Am League Monday and will pitch in the teams’ final game of its schedule, Sept. 5 against the Worcester Tornadoes in Brockton.

According the Associated Press, Lee, who still owns the Red Sox franchise record for games pitched by a left-hander (321), pitches more than 200 innings per year in over-40 men’s leagues in New England and Atlantic Canada. Lee pitched for the Red Sox from 1969-78 before being traded to Montreal in ’79. He last pitched in 1982, at the age of 35, appearing in seven games for the Expos.

For more Red Sox coverage see the team page at weei.com/redsox.

Iglesias returning to Portland Tuesday

08.16.10 at 7:35 pm ET
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Red Sox shortstop prospect Jose Iglesias will be returned to Double A Portland after spending his last 13 games with Single A Lowell, rehabbing from an occult fracture of his right index finger. During his time with the short-season Spinners, Iglesias hit .350 with a .458 on-base percentage. Prior to his injury, the 20-year-old was hitting .306 while with the Sea Dogs. While he spent some of his time serving as Lowell’s designated hitter, Iglesias is scheduled to play shortstop Tuesday, at Hadlock Field against Altoona. For more Red Sox coverage see the team page at weei.com/redsox.

Cecchini signs, donates chunk of bonus to Jimmy Fund

08.16.10 at 6:21 pm ET
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Garin Cecchini has told WEEI.com that he will be signing with the Red Sox for $1.31 million, a step down from his initial signing bonus demands that scared other teams away, but still a sizable investment. A fourth-round pick, Cecchini was considered a top player in the draft before tearing his ACL in March. Cecchini played shortstop in high school but is expected to be a third baseman in the Red Sox organization.

Cecchini is considered a toolsy infielder with what Garye LaFevers, his Team USA coach calls a “selectively aggressive” approach at the plate. The 19-year-old is also considered to be capable of having an impact on the basepaths, as he’s run a 6.73 60-yard dash and stole 55 bases as a high school junior at Barbe High School in Lake Charles, La.

Upon reaching the agreement with the Red Sox, Cecchini decided to donate $20,000 to the Jimmy Fund.

“I’ve been blessed and need to give back,” Cecchini told WEEI.com in a text message Monday.

A dedicated student with educational goals and hopes of becoming a lawyer after college, Cecchini was verbally committed to LSU but was willing to entertain going pro if he received a sizable offer. As a result, he wrote to each team asking them to bypass him in the draft unless they felt they could meet his contractual demands, which at the time consisted of a $1.75 million signing bonus.

Cecchini recently was in town to take a physical with the Red Sox, but flew in and out without getting a deal done. Things progressed in negotiations, however, to the point where Cecchini expressed confidence earlier Monday that an agreement could be reached.

One knock on Cecchini is his injury history, which began when he first saw Dr. James Andrews as a youngster. A quarterback, Cecchini required rotator cuff surgery when he was 12. He quit football to focus on baseball and playing for one of Louisiana’s most popular coaches — his father.

‘€œIt’€™s been a way of life,’€ Glenn Cecchini told WEEI.com earlier in the summer. ‘€œWhen they were old enough — I’€™m talking about when they could walk — we would bring them to the field because both of us were coaching. They would just hang out and we’€™d have people drop them off from school at the baseball field. They would do their homework at the field.’€

The lefty hitting Cecchini outshone first overall pick Bryce Harper for Team USA in an under-18 tournament last summer. In the eight-game tournament that yielded a gold medal for Team USA, Cecchini hit .333 with an impressive .529 OBP and .708 slugging mark while hitting sixth and seventh and playing left field. By comparison, Harper hit .294 with a .375 OBP.

With Cecchini in the fold, 39th overall pick Anthony Ranaudo remains the biggest piece of the Red Sox 2010 draft haul to still be unsigned. The team has until midnight to agree with the right-hander before they lose his rights and he returns to LSU as a draft-elgible senior.

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Red Sox come to terms with Workman, Coyle

08.16.10 at 4:58 pm ET
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According to sources familiar with the situation, the Red Sox have come to terms with both second-round selection Brandon Workman, and Sean Coyle, their third-round pick.

Workman, a right-handed pitcher out of the University of Texas (the draft’s 57th round overall pick), will sign a deal that includes an $800,000 signing bonus. The agreement was finalized after a call between the Red Sox and Workman’s representatives on a 2 p.m. call, with the player coming down from his asking price of $1.25 million and the Sox coming up from the MLB’s suggested slot of approximately $634,000. He will begin his professional career in the coming days, reporting to Fort Myers.

Coyle the 110th overall selection in this year’s amateur draft, has agreed to a signing bonus of $1.3 million, WEEI.com has confirmed (the bonus amount was first reported by Baseball America’s Jim Callis). The Pennsylvania high school star flew into Boston with his father for a physical on Monday, and to see if the final details of a contract could be arranged. The finalized terms were well above MLB’s recommended slot of $300,000.

For more coverage of the Red Sox signings, and all other Sox coverage, visit the team page at weei.com/redsox.

Read More: Brandon Workman, mlb draft 2010, sean coyle,

Report: Price, Sox agree to deal

08.16.10 at 4:29 pm ET
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According to a report from Kendall Rogers of Yahoo! Sports, eighth-round pick Mathew Price has signed with the Red Sox. Terms of the deal were not included in the report.

Price, a right-handed starter at Virginia Tech, posted a 7-4 record with a 4.95 ERA in 17 appearances with the Hokies in 2010. He struck out 85 batters against 26 walks in 91.0 innings pitched.

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Cecchini, Red Sox close to deal

08.16.10 at 2:27 pm ET
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Multiple industry sources have indicated to WEEI.com that the Red Sox and fourth-round pick Garin Cecchini are closing in on a deal that should be completed prior to midnight’s deadline for signing draft choices.

Cecchini, a shortstop out of Barbe High School in Lake Charles, LA, who is expected to play third base as a professional, is verbally committed to play at LSU next season. A committed student and aspiring lawyer, Cecchini wanted to go to college and told major league teams that he would indeed do so if he wasn’t given a $1.75 million signing bonus.

Whether or not the exact number demanded is met, sources from both sides of the negotiation have expressed confidence that a deal will indeed get done.

Praised for his tools and selective approach at the plate, the lefty hitting Cecchini outshone first overall pick Bryce Harper for Team USA in an under-18 tournament last summer. In the eight-game tournament that yielded a gold medal for Team USA, Cecchini hit .333 with an impressive .529 OBP and .708 slugging mark while hitting sixth and seventh and playing left field. By comparison, Harper hit .294 with a .375 OBP.

Cecchini, who is also a high-level base-stealer (55 steals as a junior) and has been times as fast as 6.73 seconds in the 60-yard dash, fell to the fourth round due to signability questions and an ACL tear suffered in March. For the complete story on Cecchini, click here.

Alex Speier contributed to this report.

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Source: Workman had $1.25 million offers

08.16.10 at 2:24 pm ET
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According to a baseball source, before he was taken by the Red Sox in the second round of the 2010 draft, right-hander Brandon Workman was told by multiple teams that they would sign him to a bonus of $1.25 million if he fell to them in the draft. (Jim Callis of Baseball America was the first to report that Workman had received such an offer.) That explains, in part, why negotiations between the Sox and Workman had not progressed as of mid-day on Monday: Workman believes that he is worth such a bonus, while the Sox have a different valuation of him.

The Sox were told before the draft that Workman would have accepted a slot bonus with their first-round pick (No. 20 overall, a spot at which the Sox selected Kolbrin Vitek and signed him to a slot bonus of $1.359 million), but that he would not have accepted a bonus in line with what the team’s second overall choice (No. 36 overall, where the team signed Bryce Brentz for $892,000). The Sox, however, had showed little inclination to date to make a first-round offer to Workman, feeling that the offers he might have been able to secure from other clubs are not relevant, given that he is free only to negotiate with them.

As of Sunday night, the Sox had not made an offer to Workman beyond the slot-recommended figure for a second rounder (No. 57 overall). On Monday morning, a source said that the Sox were continuing reallocating the money that they’d set aside for Workman to sign other players, such as Lucas LeBlanc (an 11th-rounder with whom the Sox are close to an agreement for a second-round bonus figure).

The two sides were scheduled to talk on Monday afternoon, after the team had already neared its agreement with LeBlanc.

Read More: Brandon Workman, mlb draft 2010,

UPDATE: Sox sign 11th rounder LeBlanc for $500K

08.16.10 at 1:01 pm ET
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According to a source familiar with the situation, the Red Sox agreed to a deal with outfielder Lucas LeBlanc for $500,000, luring him away from his scholarship commitment to Louisiana State University. LeBlanc, a Louisiana native, was thought to have a strong commitment to the Tigers, as he planned to transfer to LSU from Delgado Junior College. As recently as a couple days ago, the 11th round selection had said that he was ready to start his LSU career after the Sox had not come close to his asking price. For much of the summer, the Sox had operated with the expectation that they would not be able to sign the outfielder.

But discussions between the two sides progressed unexpectedly quickly in the last couple of days, to the point where a deal will now take place.

“He just does everything really well. He’€™s just a good all-around baseball player,” Sox amateur scouting director Amiel Sawdaye said shortly after the draft. “He’€™s not going to a super-flashy defender with big-time power. He’€™s just going to do everything really well.”

LeBlanc was named a Junior College All-American after hitting .420 with 11 homers and 67 RBI for Delgado.

WEEI.com reported earlier on Monday that the Sox were considering reallocating the money allotted for second-round pick Brandon Workman to sign LeBlanc. It appears that the team has done just that. Even so, the Sox were still scheduled to talk with Workman on Monday afternoon, following the agreement with LeBlanc, so it appears that the deal with the outfielder may not be mutually exclusive with a conversation with the pitcher.

News that an agreement between the Sox and LeBlanc had been reached was first reported (via Twitter) by ABC 26 reporter Ed Daniels. NewOrleans.com reports that LeBlanc had turned down a $325,000 offer from the Sox last week, but that when the team came back with a $500,000 offer, he agreed to the deal.

For more on LeBlanc, click here.

Read More: Brandon Workman, Lucas Leblanc, mlb draft 2010,
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