ARLINGTON — The Texas Rangers’ farm system has been strengthened.
Florida outfielder Wyatt Langfordthe fourth overall pick in this month’s MLB Draft, he officially signed with the Rangers on Tuesday and earned an $8 million signing bonus, a person with direct knowledge of the negotiations confirmed. The Dallas morning news. MLB.com’s Jim Callis first reported the details of the signing bonus.
“He’s a championship player,” Rangers general manager Chris Young said Tuesday. “I think that’s what it all comes down to. We’re trying to fill our organization with champion players, and we certainly believe Wyatt is that.”
Langford’s excess capping bonus (the value of this year’s fourth overall pick was $7.69 million) is the sixth-biggest in MLB history, trailing only Washington’s Paul Skenes ($9, 2 million, 2023), Detroit’s Spencer Torkelson ($8.42 million, 2020), Baltimore’s Jackson Holiday ($8.19 million, 2022), Arizona’s Druw Jones ($8.19 million, 2022) and Baltimore’s Adley Rutschman ( $8.10 million, 2020). Rangers 2021 first-round pick Jack Leiter ($7.92 million) was previously the fifth-highest signing bonus ever.
The 21-year-old outfielder was unveiled at Globe Life Field on Tuesday and given a Rangers jersey number 36.
Langford said there’s no specific sentiment behind the number (“It’s kind of like what they gave me in Florida,” he said), but said he hopes to stick with it.
“Arlington, it’s hard to beat a place like here in Texas,” Langford said. “Compared to some of the other places, this is the only place I would have liked to end up in, and that’s how it played out. I’m really excited to be here.”
Langford, a junior, was considered one of the best complete hitters in the draft. He slashed .373/.498/.784 with 21 home runs, 57 RBI and 83 runs scored in his final season in Florida this spring. He was a unanimous first-team All-American, a Golden Spikes semifinalist, and led the Gators to the College World Series Finals.
Rangers director of amateur scouting Kip Fagg said Langford first appeared on his radar halfway through his second season in Florida. Langford had just four at-bats as a freshman at Gainesville.
“The year he had as a sophomore was eye-opening,” Fagg said. “It was a tremendous year. Not a lot of guys have that path — they don’t play a lot their first year and then perform like they did their sophomore year, so obviously his sophomore year, he was on our radar for sure.”
In his latest ranking of the top 100 prospects, baseball america named Langford the No. 11 overall prospect in baseball and the No. 1 prospect in the Rangers organization. Young said Langford will report to the Arizona Rookie League with the rest of the Texas draft picks in a few weeks.
“We want to make sure we do the right thing for Wyatt and set him up for success,” Young said. “I’m sure he’s looking forward to getting started.”
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