Washington Nationals Sign Lucas Giolito

WASHINGTON, DC - JULY 01: Manager Davey Johnson #5 and general manager Mike Rizzo of the Washington Nationals talk before the game against the Pittsburgh Pirates at Nationals Park on July 1, 2011 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Greg Fiume/Getty Images)

The Washington Nationals agreed to a $2.925 million deal with first-round pick Lucas Giolito right at last night's signing deadline, tweets Keith Law of ESPN.

With Law's tweet coming at 5:01pm EST, it's safe to say that negotiations between the Nats and Giolito went right down to the wire. The sixteenth overall selection in last month's draft, Giolito will get roughly $800k more than his recommended slot value of $2.1 million.

A power right-hander out of Harvard-Westlake High School in Studio City, California, Giolito was considered one of the top picks in the draft until an elbow injury sidelined him for part of his senior year. Several experts believe Giolito to be the best prospect in the Nationals' system already, according to Adam Kilgore of the Washington Post.

Giolito has thrown his fastball 100 mph, and he pairs that with a wicked, hard curve and a workable changeup. Nationals Assistant General Manager Roy Clark compared his potential to Roy Halladay.

In their signing of Giolito, the Nationals exceeded their signing bonus pool by roughly $100,000. The team will incur an $84,000 fine for the infraction but will not have to forfeit a future draft pick.

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Is Giolito the best prospect in the Nationals' system now?

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