The last of the five Georgia high schoolers selected in the first round of the June baseball draft has signed a professional contract.
Cook High third baseball Kaleb Cowart reached agreement with the Los Angeles Angels only hours before the Monday's 11:59 p.m. deadline.
“I just felt like it was the right move,” Cowart said. “I prayed about it and I feel like this is what God wants me to do.”
Cowart, drafted No. 18 overall by the Angels, reportedly signed for bonus of $2.3 million.
"We got close to the money figure," Cowart said. "We just kept talking money. I had a price out there and they got relatively close to it. That's just life-changing money and I couldn't turn that down."
Cowart was one of three Atlantan first-rounders drafted by the Angels in the first round, along with East Coweta pitcher Cam Bedrosian and Marietta outfielder Chevez Clarke. By signing, Cowart bypassed his baseball scholarship to Florida State.
"There was a lot of anticipation. I didn't know if it was going to get done," Cowart said. "I'm excited to join the Angels' family. It was hard to tell the Florida State coaches that I wasn't going there.
"It just so happened that I was blessed to be able to play pro ball out of high school. Not everyone has that opportunity. Sometimes I wish you could go to college for a year like basketball, but it's not like that."
The deal was reached after four days of face-to-face meetings with Angels' officials in Anaheim. Cowart signed his contract, met with the media for a newsconference a couple of hours later and then caught an evening flight to Tempe, Ariz. He will work out there with the Angels' rookie league team for two weeks, return home for two weeks and then report back to Arizona for instructional league.
The rest of Georgia’s “Fab Five” — the five state high school players selected in the first round of the June major-league draft — are Woodward Academy infielder Delino DeShields (No. 8 to Astros), Blessed Trinity outfielder Jake Skole (No. 15 to Rangers), Bedrosian (No. 29 to Angels) and Clarke (No. 30 to Angels).
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Credit: Jason Getz / Jason.Getz@ajc.com