I was going to post a reply to Sam in the comments section of my previous entry but it would be way long and I thought it was a point that merited some more discussion.
Sam's opinion is one I respect but I must disagree here pretty strongly. I think it is very unreasonable to demand a major league contract for a draft pick.
First, let's look at the LoDuca thing. I've been very clear on my feelings about that one. I think it was a very bad signing. It was too much money for a guy who is deep into the fourth quarter of his career. I think we'd all agree that finding and plucking Flores in the Rules 5 draft is JimBow's greatest contribution to the Nats. Bringing in LoDuca would not help Flores' development. It would retard it. Fortunately, things worked out so Flores could be the guy anyway but it was not fortunate that the team wasted so much money on LoDuca.
That said, I'm not going to denegrate what LoDuca did earlier in his career. He made multiple all-star teams and played on winners. He was a legit major leaguer. I just think he was the wrong guy for this team.
Crow? What's he done outside the collegiate ranks? Not a damn thing.
These draft picks get ginormous bonuses because of their potential. That potential gets them drafted high and the reward is in the millions. I think it is excessive but that's the system. I have no issue with them wanting more than slot and I'm OK with the Nats going a bit over that slot.
But a major league contract? No flippin way. The contract has to be earned. Crow hasn't earned it yet. He hasn't done a single thing as a professional, yet we're supposed to accept that he should go to Class A and earn in the same ballpark as Milledge, Dukes, Flores, Zimmerman?
The previous first-rounders in the Nats era have been Zimmerman, Marrero, Willems and Detwiler. Zimmerman is the only one we know for sure is (or will be) a legit big leaguer. What I do know is that none of the four has shown any signs of being a prima donna. They got their big bonuses and now they're trying to earn their big contract.
Crow, through his agents, is being made to look like a prima donna. Might be the finest kid in the world. Who knows? His big-time agents are doing their best to make it look otherwise.
Go above slot. Offer him $2.5 or $2.8 or even $3 million.
Make him prove himself before you give him a big-league contract.
If he balks, his agents know the way to Fort Worth. Like I said before: AMF.