"Money is obviously one of the big factors," said Beede, who
went 14-1 with a 0.80 ERA while striking out 189 in 96 1/3
innings at Lawrence Academy. "We know that Toronto is a
great organization and they are developing their young
players very well. So that's not really a factor, we know
they're going to be great on that side.
"It really comes down to the money and if we can work things
out that way I'm sure we'll be all set."
Beede was projected to go lower in the Draft by many experts
because it was believed he would be a tough player to sign.
His father went as far as sending out letters to area scouts
in recent weeks reiterating his son's plans to attend school
in the fall.
That was viewed by many as a negotiating ploy in an effort
to impact future contract talks. Last year, Minnesota signed
the 21st pick, Alex Wimmers, for $1.332 million, but it has
been rumored that Beede is seeking Top 10 money.
Beede's camp has denied that any specific figures have been
discussed. That's something that will have to sort itself
out in the coming weeks and months leading up to an Aug. 15
deadline to reach an agreement.
The negotiations and the ultimate decision likely won't be
an easy one to make, but Beede is looking forward to the
"The commitment to Vanderbilt is obviously a strong one,"
said Beede, who would not be eligible to re-enter the Draft
until his junior year if he chooses to go to school. "It has
been a guarantee since the beginning and I really had no say
in what team drafted me, when or where.
"Our family is very excited about the opportunity that is
laying ahead of us, but that decision will be made in the
future and I'm very excited about making it, and it's going
to be a hard one."
Toronto clearly has enough resources to make a deal happen.
The club spent $11.6 million in bonuses last year, which was
the third highest total in Draft history.
That sum could increase again in 2011, but general manager
Alex Anthopoulos has stated in the past that his
organization places a predetermined value on each pick.
If the club can get the player signed for that amount then
it will gladly do so. If not, the Blue Jays would be forced
to walk away from contract negotiations and instead receive
the 21st overall pick in next year's Draft as compensation.
That's a worst-case scenario and one the club doesn't feel
like it will have to go through.
"As far as him committed to Vanderbilt, I think he is pretty
excited about the opportunity of playing professional
baseball," Blue Jays director of scouting Andrew Tinnish
said on Monday night. "Only time will tell if we sign him, but we feel pretty confident."
Beede talked to Toronto-based reporters during a conference
call on Tuesday afternoon. He spoke articulately and sounds
mature well beyond his years.
The native of Auburn, Mass., also appears to have an
interest in the business side of baseball. Beede says that
background comes from his father Walter, who is a former
professional baseball player and has a handle on how
negotiations should go.
"I guess the business side comes from my dad," Beede said.
"He has really handled the business side of it this spring.
I was just the one to take the ball, go out on the mound and
do my thing and not worry about the business side."
Walter was taken in the 13th round of the 1981 Draft by the Cubs. He played one season of rookie ball in the Gulf Coast League and has had a big impact on Beede's development as a budding prospect.
The former Minor Leaguer taught his son how to throw a
curveball by age 13 and has been instrumental in Beede's
smooth and almost effortless pitching delivery.
"He has been everything for me," said Beede, whose fastball
has been clocked as high as 94 mph. "He started teaching me
simple pitching mechanics and the mental side of the game
early too, just to be poised and composed on the mound.
"To learn that at a very young age I think was very big for
me. It stuck with me through Little League and through high
school and made me the person and pitcher I am today ... He
has gotten me to this point and I wouldn't be here without
Even though a large portion of Tuesday's conference call was
spent talking about the business side of the game that
doesn't mean Beede was any less excited when commissioner
Bud Selig called his name with the 21st overall pick.
Beede watched the Draft with more than 120 people at his
trainer Eric Cressey's livingroom in Massachusetts. There
was jubilation in the room from family and friends when the
pick was made.
Toronto had been rumored to be after the young right-hander,
but had not been in touch with him since watching his final
start for Lawrence Academy on May 25.
That made for a welcome surprise for Beede, who is familiar
with the Blue Jays after having grown up a big fan of the
"When they said my name it was pretty much a shock because
we really didn't hear about it prior to the pick but we were
very excited," Beede said.
"The Jays are a tremendous organization and I was very
excited to be drafted by them. I'm hoping that we can get
something done and that would be an amazing opportunity."