The Tampa Bay Rays have signed their 37th overall pick from the 2020 MLB Draft.
Tampa Bay Rays News: The team has secured a contract with their 37th overall, competitive balance round A pick. Alika Williams. The shortstop put pen to paper with a $1.85 million signing bonus, slightly under the $1.999,300 allocation for the 37th pick of the draft.
Williams was selected in the 32nd round of the 2017 MLB Draft out of Rancho Bernardo High School in San Diego by the New York Yankees.
Instead, he went to Arizona State where he improved his value to a first-round pick and walked away with nearly $2,000,000 signing bonus.
Williams is known for his glovework but he also finished his career at ASU with a .300 average and a .383 on-base percentage. In 2019, he slashed .333/.429/.474 with 19 extra-base hits in just 213 at-bats.
He may not project as a 30-homer major leaguer but he has a great hit tool with progressing power and a higher ceiling than many believe. Williams walked more times than he struck out in his time at Arizona State University.
Williams fits the mold of a versatile, athletic player the franchise is drawn toward.
The Rays acquired the 37th pick in the trade that sent Matthew Liberatore to the Cardinals in exchange for Randy Arozarena and Jose Martinez.
Williams finished third on the 2019 Arizona State team with 53 RBI, second in triples with three, second in steals with nine, and fourth in OBP with .429. This is a team that included some top talent such as 2020’s number one draft pick Spencer Torkelson and last year’s 10th overall pick Hunter Bishop.
Williams recently spoke about how he views himself as a well-rounded ballplayer rather than a defense-first type. The Rays are in agreement with Williams and they just put $1.85 million on that bet.
Williams is another incredibly solid talent added to the best farm system in the game. He has a high floor with an interesting upside.