Mariners sign No. 3 overall pick Mike Zunino

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The Mariners announced this evening that they have agreed to terms with No. 3 overall pick Mike Zunino. He’ll be officially introduced during a news conference tomorrow.

Jerry Crasnick of ESPN.com reports that Zunino will get a $4 million bonus, which is $1.2 million below the slot recommendation for the pick. No. 1 overall pick Carlos Correa received a $4.8 million from the Astros while No. 2 overall pick Byron Buxton got $6 million from the Twins. Both of those deals were also under the slot recommendation.

Zunino, a catcher out of the University of Florida, was recently named Baseball America’s college player of the year. The 21-year-old has plus-power from the right side of the plate and is highly-regarded for his leadership and defensive ability.

Tigers, Royals to play a regular season game in Omaha next year

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Major League Baseball announced today that the Kansas City Royals and the Detroit Tigers will play a regular season game in Omaha, Nebraska next year to open the festivities for the College World Series.

The game will be played on Thursday, June 13, 2019 at TD Ameritrade Park in Omaha two days before the first game of the Series. It will be televised nationally by ESPN. TD Ameritrade Park has a seating capacity of 24,000, with the ability to expand to 35,000 spectators. Which, um, probably means this will be one of the larger crowds for the Royals next year if the club’s current trajectory continues.

This will be the fourth small-park, special occasion regular season game for Major League Baseball in recent years. hIn July 2016 the Atlanta Braves and the Miami Marlins played at Fort Bragg, North Carolina for service members. Last August the Pittsburgh Pirates and the St. Louis Cardinals played in the inaugural Little League Classic, which took place at Bowman Field in Williamsport, Pennsylvania. There will be a second Little League Classic in Williamsport this August between the Philadelphia Phillies and the New York Mets.