The SF Giants made progress on Monday with the 2023 draft class, signing their top two picks. They followed that up on Tuesday by reportedly signing ninth-round pick Charlie Szykowny according to Jim Callis of MLB.Com.
SF Giants agree to signing bonus for 9th-round pick
Callis reports that Szykowny agreed to a signing bonus for $47,500. The slot value for the No. 270 pick was $177,500, so his signing was well under slot value. The $130,000 in bonus savings will be reapplied to the rest of the class.
There are a few reasons for this. The Giants have already committed nearly $7 million of their $9.9 million bonus pool allotment with the signings of both Bryce Eldrige ($3,997,500) and Walker Martin ($2,997,500).
This means that they have apprxoimately $3 million remaining to sign the remainder of their picks. I should note that they can exceed their bonus pool allotment by five percent without forfeiting future picks. It is likely that they will come very close to this threshold when it is all said and done.
On a related note, teams can offer up to $150,000 for a signing bonus for any player drafted after the 10th round. Any amount above that will count against the team's bonus pool allotment.
So, the Giants selected Szykowny likely as an overdraft and knowing that they would be able to sign him for below slot value. This along with the fact that he was a fourth-year senior reduced any type of leverage that he might have.
Nonetheless, Szykowny is coming off of a successful 2023 campaign in which he posted a .335/.426/.655 line with 16 home runs, 55 RBI, and 47 runs in 237 plate appearances for the University of Illinois - Chicago. This includes an 8.9 percent walk rate against a 14.3 percent strikeout rate.
The left-handed bat has good power and a strong, 6-foot-4, 225-pound frame. He starts his hands at eye level, but still finds a way to create a bat bath that lifts the ball. The movement in his lower half is reminiscent of Brandon Belt in that he begins with an open stance and then closes it with his stride.
There are a few moving parts, so the Giants may want to work on quieting some of that movement. In the field, Szykowny appeared primarily at shortstop in college, but is currently listed on as a third baseman.
The 23-year-old did also appear briefly in the mound throughout his college career. He was able to reach 90 MPH with his fastball, which is a quality that tends to translate well for players at the hot corner.