Cubs Officially Announce Signings of Burl Carraway, Luke Little, Koen Moreno

Rather than try to repackage the basic info, I’ll just give you the official press release with Thursday’s news about signing all three pitchers taken in the 2020 draft. Stick around after for some commentary on bonus values and potential implications.

The Chicago Cubs today announced they have signed three of their selections in the 2020 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft, including left-handed pitcher Burl Carraway out of Dallas Baptist University (second round), left-handed pitcher Luke Little out of San Jacinto College North (fourth round) and right-handed pitcher Koen Moreno out of Panther Creek (N.C.) High School (fifth round).

The signing of shortstop Ed Howard out of Mount Carmel High School (first round) was previously announced on Monday.

Carraway, 21, went 6-2 with 11 saves and a 2.47 ERA (14 ER/51.0 IP) in his final two seasons at Dallas Baptist, including eight appearances in his shortened 2020 junior campaign. He struck out 89 batters, while walking 28, in 51.0 innings during this span.

The six-foot southpaw was named First Team All-Missouri Valley Conference as a sophomore in 2019, going 4-2 with a 2.81 ERA and a team-high six saves. He struck out 15.72 batters per nine innings, the second-best single-season mark in school history. Following the collegiate season, he pitched with the U.S. Collegiate National Team.

A native of College Station, Texas, Carraway graduated from A&M Consolidated High School where he was a three-time All-District selection.

Little, 19, struck out 86 batters, while walking 39, in 44.1 innings in two seasons at San Jacinto. In 2019, the six-foot, eight-inch southpaw went 3-1 with two saves and a 2.04 ERA in 35.1 innings, striking out 69 batters.

A native of Matthews, N.C., Little graduated from East Mecklenburg High School in Charlotte, N.C., where he was a 2018 Perfect Game pre-season All-American.

Moreno, 18, posted five wins and a 1.62 ERA with 80 strikeouts in 47.2 innings of work as a high school junior in 2019. The right-handed pitcher is a native of Cary, N.C.

Here are the bonus amounts for the pitchers the Cubs signed (slot), per Gordon Wittenmyer:

Carraway – $1.05 million ($1.437M)
Little – $492,700 (same)
Moreno – $900,000 ($367,900)

They signed Ed Howard for his exact slot value of $3.745 million, which means they’ve got just over $533,000 remaining for third-rounder Jordan Nwogu. That’s lower than his slot value of $678,600, but should be more than enough to get him to sign since returning for his senior season would remove any leverage he’s got.

Getting Carraway that far below slot as quickly as they did is interesting and makes me wonder whether they’ve got plans to add him to the 60-man roster that has to be submitted on Sunday. Perhaps the assurance of being fast-tracked was enough to entice him to sign immediately and get right to work.

Moreno getting a bigger bonus than Little isn’t all that surprising since the Cubs needed to buy the high school senior out of his commitment to East Carolina.

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