Diamondbacks Sign UCLA Commit Felipe Perez

PHOENIX - SEPTEMBER 22: (L-R) President & Chief Executive Officer Derrick Hall Executive Vice President & General Manager Kevin Towers and Managing General Partner Ken Kendrick of the Arizona Diamondbacks attend the Major League Baseball game against the Colorado Rockies at Chase Field on September 22 2010 in Phoenix Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

Through a loophole in Major League Baseball’s new collective bargaining agreement, the Arizona Diamondbacks have signed right-hander Felipe Perez, who was committed to pitch for the University of California, Los Angeles, UCLA, reports Eric Sondheimer of the Los Angeles Times:

In a move that could produce new tension between college baseball coaches and major league teams, the Arizona Diamondbacks appear to have used a loophole in the new collective bargaining agreement to sign pitcher Felipe Perez, an incoming freshman at UCLA, on Thursday night.

The Diamondbacks signed Perez, who’s listed at 6-foot-3 and 200 pounds, for $400,000, according to Sondheimer. Perez ranked ninth on ESPN’s Jason A. Churchill’s list of the top-ten California high school prospects in the MLB Draft class of 2012. Here’s Churchill’s scouting report on the right-hander:

This 6-foot-3, 200-pound right-hander pitches at 88 to 91 mph but has touched 93 and throws two breaking balls — a 72 to 75 mph curveball and a 77 to 79 mph slider. His arm works well from a high, three-quarter slot and he's performed well in showcase events, something scouts remember throughout the spring.

Sondheimer notes that MLB had established July 13 as the deadline for drafted players to sign with their major league teams, and few colleges expected to lose those players that went undrafted, but he adds that this signing by the Diamondbacks "could change all that."

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What are your thoughts on the DBacks signing of Perez?

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