On June 4 1996 — Pitching dominates the baseball draft as 14 of the first 22 selections are moundsmen. Clemson pitcher Kris Benson is the top choice‚ going to Pittsburgh where he’ll snag a $2 million signing bonus‚ while the Twins pick power-hitting Travis Lee from San Diego State as the 2nd choice. Four of the first-round picks, Lee, P Bobby Seay, chosen 14th by the White Sox, P John Patterson, the Expos’ first choice, and Matt White, the Giants’ top selection, will not sign and become free agents because of a loophole discovered by agent Scott Boras. The agent says that the letters tendered to the picks are not offers on specific forms and that only the latter can be used within 15 days of drafting or the players are free agents. The four will ink contracts with the Devil Rays and Diamondbacks‚ with White getting a $10.2 million bonus‚ the largest in history.

 


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Sources:

Baseball Reference June 4

SABR Games Project

National Pastime June 4

Hall of Fame

Replay The Game

Retro Sheet