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Red Sox sign fourth-round draft pick Noe Ramirez

08.15.11 at 7:10 pm ET
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The Red Sox signed right-hander Noe Ramirez, their fourth-round draft pick, on Monday. (AP)

The Red Sox have signed right-hander Noe Ramirez, their fourth-round selection in the 2011 draft to a bonus of $625,000. (The bonus amount was first reported by Jim Callis of Baseball America.) While Major League Baseball recommended a $180,000 bonus for the No. 142 overall draft choice, Ramirez received more than triple that amount, a reflection of the fact that the Sox regarded him as a pitcher whose talent and college track record were in line with a second-round selection.

In three college seasons at Cal State Fullerton, Ramirez was 29-7 with a 2.57 ERA, more than a strikeout an inning and a strikeout-to-walk ratio of better than five-to-one. He pitched in the College World Series and on Team USA. As such, based on his track record, he is viewed as a pitcher capable of reaching the majors quickly.

The 6-foot-3 right-hander doesn’t have an overpowering fastball. But his funky delivery makes him somewhat deceptive with the high-80s to low-90s offering. Meanwhile, he features a decent curve and a swing-and-miss changeup that makes him an intriguing prospect.

Moreover, coaches and scouts rave about Ramirez’ makeup and determination to learn and succeed. So does Blue Jays pitcher Ricky Romero, who has become close with Ramirez owing to their shared backgrounds as kids who grew up in East Los Angeles before heading to Cal State Fullerton on scholarship offers.

“He reminds me a lot of me. He has heart, and he’s doing whatever it takes to get better everyday,” said Romero. “I think that takes you a longer way than having natural talent. If you have heart, you continue to work hard and continue to work to get to a certain place, you’ll make it.

“All I can say is that the Sox got a great player with a great heart who is determined to do whatever it takes to win. Hopefully we’ll see him up here soon competing against us,” Romero added. “It would be a dream for me to have him pitch against me – two East LA kids on the biggest of stages. That would be something special, something I’d look forward to. And I’d wish him the best of luck.”

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