Barnegat High pitcher and Boston Red Sox first round draft pick Jason Groome has agreed to a $3.65 million dollar signing bonus and begin his professional baseball career
One day before the deadline to sign 2016 MLB Draft picks, Jason Groome has agreed to terms with the Boston Red Sox. Evan Drillich of the Boston Herald reported that Groome was in Boston for a physical, Jared Carrabis of Barstool Sports confirmed that Groome agreed to terms and Jon Heyman of MLB Network confirmed that the signing bonus was $3.65 million dollars. Groome was the #12 overall pick in the 2016 MLB Draft, the highest selection ever for a Shore Conference baseball product. The 6-foot-5 lefthander was projected to be a top 5 pick, but slid down to #12 and Boston. The Red Sox slot at #12 was just under $3.2 million dollars, but Boston’s ability to sign its other draft picks below slot value in a number of spots allowed the Red Sox to go nearly $500,000 over slot to get Groome locked up.
Groome left Barnegat High School following his sophomore season to enroll at IMG Academy in Florida. It was during his junior year down south that he climbed the mock draft boards and became a top MLB prospect. With an effortless motion that reaches the mid 90s, Groome has a tremendous curveball to go along with his heater. Jay made the decision to return to Barnegat High School for his senior season to get a chance to play with his teammates and try to bring the Bengals a state championship. His return to Ocean County brought a circus of MLB scouts and personnel at every one of his starts.
The NJSIAA put a halt to the Groome hype machine when the organization ruled that he needed to sit out 30 days for his transfer back from IMG Academy, even though his family never left Barnegat. His first two starts including the Central no-hitter were wiped off the record book and Groome was forced to miss two more starts before returning to the Bengals rotation in early May. Factoring in his two starts that were nullified due to the transfer violation, Groome was 2-3 with a 0.77 ERA striking out 90 and walking 14 batters.