Pirates Prospects is reporting the Pirates have agreed to terms with their 23rd round pick, RHP Jordan Cooper. Cooper was drafted by the Pirates in 2009 in the 17th round by the Pirates, but didn’t sign. So the team obviously likes him. He went 3-2 with a 4.61 ERA in 66 1/3 innings the year as a draft-eligible sophomore for Kentucky, who plays in the baseball powerhouse SEC.
Here’s what Baseball America had to say about Cooper:
Scouts don’t know what to make of righthander Jordan Cooper. He opened the season in Kentucky’s weekend rotation and pitched his way out of it after having little success with an 88-90 mph fastball and a mediocre breaking ball. Then the 6-foot-3, 215-pounder looked like a top-five-rounds pick in midweek starts against Louisville and Western Kentucky, dealing with an 89-94 mph sinker, a harder slider and a solid changeup. He didn’t show the same stuff and lacked the same command when he returned to his Sunday slot. He has extra leverage as a 21-year-old sophomore, and the team that selects him likely will monitor his progress during the summer.
I would assume that Cooper’s bonus would be considered high for a 23rd round pick due to him having good leverage as a sophomore who can be drafted next season as well. Cooper should be joining the State College rotation and is the 14th player the Pirates have signed from this year’s draft.