Logan Davidson probably had to wait a little longer than he had hoped, but the Clemson shortstop can finally start to focus on his professional baseball career.
Davidson was taken with the 29th overall pick in Monday night’s Major League Baseball draft by the Oakland Athletics.
Davidson, who was projected to be picked in the middle of the first round, was the eighth shortstop selected in the first round and is expected to receive a signing bonus of about $2.42 million. A year ago, the 29th overall pick, catcher Noah Naylor, signed for $2.57 million with the Cleveland Indians.
Logan is the second player to drafted in his family. His father, Mark, who also played at Clemson, was taken by the Minnesota Twins in 1982 in the 11th round. Logan Davidson became the 15th Clemson player to be selected in the first round and the second in as many years. Houston picked Seth Beer a year ago with the 28th overall pick.
“I’m beyond excited to see Logan get an opportunity to pursue his dream of going into professional baseball,” said Clemson head coach Monte Lee. “He checks all the boxes, can hit, hit for power, defend run and throw. He’s a five-tool player. Not to mention he graduated in three years. He truly is the total package. I think he’s the best defensive shortstop in the draft and he’ll be a shortstop in the big leagues.”
Davidson, who graduated from Clemson in three years with a degree in management, hit a career-high .291 this past season with 15 home runs and 55 runs batted in. He was a second-team All-ACC pick.
Mark Derosa, a former Atlanta Braves utility player and MLB Network analyst, compared Davidson to former Oakland infielder Jed Lowrie, who currently plays for the New York Mets.
“I love this selection for Oakland,” Derosa said. “This guy has battled it out on the weekends in the ACC. He’s seen big-time college baseball. He’s a switch hitter, but when I saw him hit from the right side, he reminded me a lot of Jed Lowrie. I think if he can have the same kind of career as Jed Lowrie, I think he’s the steal of the draft. He’s got soft hands, a big-time arm and I hate to say it’s a safe pick, but it’s a darn good pick.”
A sentiment shared by MLB Network analyst Harold Reynolds, a two-time all star with the Seattle Mariners.
“You can see him moving around the diamond like Jed did because of his versatility,” Reynolds said. “I can see why he landed with Oakland, I think it’s a great pick.”
The question that surrounded Davidson before the draft was his struggles with a wooden bat in back-to-back summers in the Cape Code League. Davidson hit just under .200 with only had four home runs in more than 80 games.
“It would bother you, but I think he’s going to get stronger,” Reynolds said. “To me, the transition from the metal bat to wood is all about getting stronger. I think he’s got the size where I think he’s going to get a little bit stronger. I think two summers in the Cape is too small of a sample size. Let’s see how he does with 500 at bats with a wooden bat, then I think maybe you can make some kind of determination.”
Also taken on the opening night of the draft was Clemson signee Nasim Nunez, a shortstop from Collins Hill High School in Suwanee, Ga. Nunez was taken in the second round by the Miami Marlins with the 46th overall pick. His signing bonus is projected to be $1.6 million.
The deadline to sign with big league teams is July 15 at 5 p.m.