No. 13 overall pick Courtney Hawkins and the White Sox have agreed to a deal worth the exact slot amount of $2.475 million, according to Mark Gonzales of the Chicago Tribune.
Hawkins was committed to play college ball at Texas, but the high school outfielder from Corpus Christi will instead begin his pro career at age 18.
Baseball America ranked Hawkins as the 15th-best player in the draft, while ESPN.com rated him 9th overall and called him “one of the most explosive hitters in this year’s draft, combining brute strength with excellent bat speed for very hard contact.”
The Reds picked up outfielders Mason Williams and Rosell Herrera on minor league deals, MLB.com’s Mark Sheldon reports. Both Williams and Herrera will receive invites to spring training and could compete for backup outfield roles behind Adam Duvall, Billy Hamilton and Scott Schebler.
Williams, 26, completed a three-year track with the Yankees in 2017. He has yet to see a full season of playing time, however, and went 4-for-17 with two stolen bases during a five-game span with the club in 2017. While not a power hitter, his speed and steady contact rate produced a .263/.309/.318 batting line over 437 plate appearances in Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, including two home runs, three triples and 19 stolen bases.
Herrera, 25, has yet to make his big league debut. After seven years in the Rockies’ system, he finally reached Triple-A Albuquerque in 2017 and slashed .278/.351/.394 with three home runs and 20 stolen bases in 363 PA. He looks most comfortable in the left field corner, but has some experience at shortstop and third base and should give the Reds a nice utility option come spring.