Top Draft picks remain unsigned

Top Draft picks remain unsigned

DETROIT -- The Rangers have hit a lull in their efforts to sign the remaining top picks from the 2010 First-Year Player Draft. Luke Jackson, a high school pitcher from Fort Lauderdale, Fla., taken with the 44th overall pick, Cody Buckel, a high school pitcher out of California taken in the second round, and pitcher Justin Grimm, from the University of Georgia, all remain unsigned.

Assistant general manager Thad Levine suggested the negotiations with these three could go down to the Aug. 16 deadline and it doesn't have anything to do with the current ownership situation.

"We went into the Draft and the Draft signing process with our eyes wide open," Levine said. "We understand the landscape. It's no different than any other year. We didn't expect to sign everybody. It's business as usual. We expect we will sign more guys.

"What we've known over the past couple of years is often it's the deadline date when the real negotiations take place. History tells us there is a lot more movement in the 24 hours prior to the deadline."

Jackson has orally committed to the University of Miami, Buckel to Pepperdine University and Grimm has the option of returning to Georgia for his senior year. If a team does not sign a Draft pick by Aug. 16, they lose negotiating rights.

"One thing we've learned over the years is colleges are doing a tremendous job of recruiting players," Levine said. "Gone is the day when you could just assume that playing professional baseball trumps colleges. We're doing a lot of things that colleges have been doing over the years as far as recruiting."