Baseball Signing Bonus

A baseball signing bonus or sign-on bonus is a sum of money paid to a new player by a Major League Baseball team as an incentive to join that franchise. Once drafted, players are offered signing bonuses as inducements to sign with the major league franchise and begin their professional careers. These bonuses are often determined by the slot of first round picks or the round of later picks.

Signing bonuses for first round picks typically run in the millions, but may drop off quickly after that to just a few thousand dollars for players in the bottom round. Once signed players are paid the standard minor league salary which is considerably less than the major league minimum salary. Players who play only baseball, have completed their senior year of college or may not qualify to play college baseball academically typically have little leverage and may be offered a signing bonus less than that of a high school senior or a player with scholarships to player other sports.

Baseball Almanac is putting together a list of every known baseball signing bonus in Major League history. We will continue to list these signing bonuses on this page as they are verified AND on the player's page.

"Most of the resentment came from the newspapers. Fifty-two thousand was a sockful of money in 1941 and the papers made a big deal of it. They were writing about me every day."- Dick Wakefield in Baseball Between the Lines (1993, Donald Honig, pp. 80-81.)

Baseball Signing Bonus

In Signing Bonus Order
(Equal Signing Bonus Sorted by Date Signed)

Signed

Player Name

Draft Rnd

Position

Signing Bonus

1

OF

$5,300,000.00

1

3B

$4,500,000.00

1

RHP

$4,000,000.00

1

OF

$3,960,000.00

1

OF

$3,700,000.00

1
OF
$3,450,000.00
1
RHP
$3,300,000.00

1

LHP

$3,200,000.00

1

3B

$3,150,000.00

1

OF

$3,000,000.00

1
1B
$3,000,000.00
1
SS
$2,750,000.00

1

RHP

$2,505,000.00

2

LHP

$2,500,000.00

1

RHP

$2,000,000.00

1
OF
$2,000,000.00

1

3B

$1,600,000.00

1

RHP

$1,550,000.00

4
C
$1,500,000.00

1

LHP

$1,330,000.00

1
2B
$1,300,000.00
1
OF
$1,134,000.00
1
LHP
$1,275,000.00
1
3B
$900,000.00
1
RHP
$800,000.00
2
RHP
$800,000.00

2

LHP

$800,000.00

2
RHP
$675,000.00

2

RHP

$585,000.00

3

1B

$575,000.00

1

OF

$575,000.00

1

RHP

$500,000.00

25

OF

$500,000.00

2
RHP
$450,000.00
18
RHP
$450,000.00

1

RHP

$350,000.00

22

RHP

$325,000.00

1

C

$241,500.00

1

RHP

$235,000.00

4
LHP
$210,000.00

1964

n/a

OF

$205,000.00

1

LHP

$200,000.00

1961

n/a

SS

$175,000.00

1

3B

$162,000.00

5
2B
$150,300.00

1

OF

$150,000.00

1960

n/a

C

$132,000.00

1960

n/a

RHP

$130,000.00

6
SS
$130,000.00

1

C

$125,000.00

7
LHP
$125,000.00

1958

n/a

OF

$120,000.00

1957

n/a

OF

$119,000.00

1961
n/a
C
$106,000.00

4

OF

$100,000.00

1950

n/a

LHP

$100,000.00

1951

n/a

SS

$100,000.00

1952

n/a

OF

$100,000.00

1957

n/a

OF

$100,000.00

1

OF

$100,000.00

9
SS
$97,500.00

8

2B/3B

$75,000.00

1956
n/a
RHP
$75,000.00

1948

n/a

C

$75,000.00

1948
n/a
LHP
$65,000.00

1947

n/a

LHP

$65,000.00

1957
n/a
RHP
$65,000.00

1946

n/a

1B

$60,000.00

1954
n/a
RHP
$60,000.00

1955

n/a

LHP

$60,000.00

1946

n/a

3B

$56,000.00

1941

n/a

OF

$52,000.00

1955
n/a
RHP
$50,000.00
1956
n/a
IF
$50,000.00
1956
n/a
LHP
$50,000.00
1957
n/a
RHP
$50,000.00
1955
n/a
OF
$50,000.00
1957
n/a
SS
$48,000.00
1953
n/a
IF
$45,000.00
1940
n/a
2B/3B
$40,000.00
1953
n/a
RHP
$40,000.00
1953
n/a
1B
$40,000.00
1953
n/a
SS
$40,000.00
1953
n/a
2B
$40,000.00
1953
n/a
RHP
$40,000.00
1953
n/a
SS
$40,000.00
1955
n/a
C
$40,000.00
1954
n/a
RHP
$35,000.00
1957
n/a
C/1B
$30,000.00
1955
n/a
RHP
$27,000.00
1953
n/a
C
$25,000.00
1957
n/a
3B
$25,000.00
1957
n/a
IF
$25,000.00
1957
n/a
RHP
$25,000.00
1955
n/a
LHP
$24,000.00
1953
n/a
IF
$23,000.00
1948
n/a
C
$20,000.00
1953
n/a
C
$20,000.00
1955
n/a
RHP
$20,000.00
1955
n/a
RHP
$20,000.00
1955
n/a
OF
$20,000.00

1955

n/a

RHP

$20,000.00

1952
n/a
SS
$10,000.00
1953
n/a
1B
$2,500.00
1939
n/a
IF
$1,000.00
1955
n/a
OF
$1,000.00
1955
n/a
SS
$500.00
1936
n/a
RHP
$1.00
Signed

Player Name

Draft Rnd

Position

Signing Bonus

Baseball Signing Bonus Data by Baseball Almanac



Did you know that Paul Pettit , a left-handed pitcher for the Pittsburgh Pirates, signed the first ever $100,000 signing bonus back in 1950? Too easy? Did you know the first bonus baby (not under the official Bonus Rule period / 1947-65) was none other than Dick Wakefield (a player who commented about it and we included that quote at the top of this page) who signed for $52,000 back in 1941?

Player names listed in the table above with an asterisk next to their name signed a signing bonus prior to the draft era which began during the 1965 regular season.

Do you have additional data you can share with us as we begin this new feature / project / data set? If so, contact us today and we'll add your data to the page once it has been verified.

Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac17h
#TuesdayTrivia: These 3 set record for Most RBI in a Game; Bottomley & Whiten in NL (12), Lazzeri in AL (11). Fifte… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac27 Jan
Angel Berroa. Born OTD1978. Won Rookie of the Year in 2003, the fourth #KansasCity #Royals player to receive the ho… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac27 Jan
Happy Birthday John Lowenstein. DYK he holds MLB record for most positions homering from over the course of a caree… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac25 Jan
Ed Head pitched in 1940, then 1942-1944, then served in the US Army during World War II. After returning to #MLB, h… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac25 Jan
Happy Birthday Tyler Graham (@tgram06). OF with #ArizonaDiamondbacks in 2012. Four-year letter winner with the OSU… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac25 Jan
OTD1974 Ray Kroc (@McDonaldsCorp) told the media, "I want to have fun with an expensive hobby. I want to do things… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac25 Jan
OTD2015: Rob Manfred became the Commissioner of Major League Baseball, replacing Bud Selig. [History of #MLB Offici… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac25 Jan
#SaturdayThoughts : There were 44 #MLB players born on January 25 (1 #AllStar: Derrick Turnbow). There were 20 #MLBtwitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac24 Jan
We were wrong. When B.K. first came-up, it was listed as January 21. At some point, it was changed by MLB / ESPN an… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac24 Jan
Great find Brian! Got so busy focusing on how he (@Smatz88) went 3-3 with 4 RBI, setting #MLB record, we skipped ou… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac24 Jan
FRIDAY FEAT: 53 times in #MLB history a player has hit 3 triples in same game. Notables: Banks, Clemente, DiMaggio,… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac23 Jan
Norman Rockwell's painting of The Rookie sold for $22.5 million in 2014. Frank Sullivan, born OTD1930, is one of th… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac22 Jan
CONGRATULATIONS to Derek Jeter & Larry Walker #HOF Class of 2020! One page, every player, in order, with method of… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac21 Jan
Since you brought Tom Chism up ('79 #Orioles), we sourced that GREAT quote we had on his page, we added a little hi… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac21 Jan
TRIVIA TUESDAY: Ten AL players have hit 2 grand slams in the same game. Tony Lazzeri 1st, in '36, then these 9 dupl… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac21 Jan
#TuesdayTrivia: 18 #MLB players have spent 20-or-more years with ONLY ONE team. Two are not in #HOF, that will chan… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac20 Jan
Well if you're going to mention Chris (@C_RusIn), then I'll need to add a GREAT quote Bud Black made about him, a c… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac20 Jan
Gene Stephens. 1st AL player to record 3-hits in an inning. Newspaper story, those who came before, those who joine… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac18 Jan
Willie Mays, in 1955, had 51 HRs & 24 SB, 1st in #MLB history with a 50-20 season. Brady Anderson, born OTD1964, di… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac17 Jan
Carl Hubbell went 23-12 in '33, won MVP & signed a new contract OTD1934, a $6,000 raise. On #BaseballAlmanac, you c… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Desktop Version