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June 6, 2012

Signee Rodgers drafted, but undecided

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Auburn's third baseball signee of the 2012 class was drafted in the third round by the Kansas City Royals on Tuesday during the MLB Draft.

Parkview Baptist (La.) left-handed pitcher Colin Rodgers was ranked No. 207 overall by Baseball America, but went No. 100 overall. Rodgers tells AuburnSports.com he has agreed tentatively to a figure with the Royals, but has yet to make a final decision.

"It's a real tough decision," Rodgers said. "I'm going to make my decision very soon. We're still talking it over, it's pretty emotional."

The slot bonus for Rodgers is $476,500. Rodgers is a crafty-lefty known for a sharp breaking ball that holds some power, sporting a 5-1 record with a 2.45 ERA as a senior. Rodgers was also a standout first baseman, hitting .333 on average.

Now, the 6-foot, 180-pound Rodgers faces the decision of becoming a professional or attending Auburn, a school he grew up loving despite being raised near Baton Rouge.

"I've been an Auburn fan growing up, I've had a couple of family members live in Auburn, they've been my dream school for awhile," Rodgers said. "It would be awesome living the college baseball life and being a college baseball player.

"But going pro, starting your career early and getting all the best help from the pro guys that know what they are doing, really starting your career off early is a pro."

Rodgers has formed friendships with Auburn signees Rock Rucker, Jordan Ebert and Sam Gillikin, all who are expected to arrive at Auburn later this summer. But he insists his decision has to be a business one for his future.

"It's tough being close friends with those guys and playing with them would be awesome, but in the end it's my decision," Rodgers said. "I'm going to do what's best for me and my family."

Royals' scouting director Lonnie Goldberg told the Kansas City Star, "we've been on him for about two years. We think we're getting another young lefty in our system who is polished. He's got a breaking ball. He's got good command. He's got a good delivery and easy arm action."

Clubs can agree to individual deals that are higher or lower than the slotted amount as long as they don't exceed their overall pool. Penalties range from taxes on overages to the loss of future draft picks.



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