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Tigers agree to deal with top pick Perry

Tigers agree to deal with top pick Perry

DETROIT -- The Tigers have agreed to terms with their top pick in last month's First-Year Player Draft. Now the question will become how quickly he'll be on track to join them in the big leagues.

Right-hander Ryan Perry, the 21st overall selection in the Draft, agreed to a contract with a $1.48 million signing bonus pending a physical on Thursday, a source familiar with the negotiation confirmed to MLB.com on Wednesday. Assuming the deal becomes final with medical results, he'll report to Class A Lakeland this weekend. From there, the former University of Arizona reliever could be on track for a September callup to the Majors.

The Tucson Citizen first reported the signing Wednesday morning.

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"They basically have said they would like me to be in the big leagues by the end of the summer once the rosters are expanded [Sept. 1]," Perry told the paper. "I hope to get that nice little phone call."

The Tigers selected Perry, one in a series of college relievers to go in the middle to late portion of the first round, after a standout spring working out of the Arizona bullpen. The right-hander posted a 6-3 record and 2.89 ERA overall, but went 5-1 with an ERA around 1.50 once he moved out of the Wildcats' rotation and into relief exclusively just before midseason.

With a consistent mid-90s fastball that can touch as high as 98 mph to go with a power slider and an occasional changeup, Perry has what could be considered a power reliever's arsenal. The Tigers have a precedence for fast-tracking college pitchers for late-season callups out of the Draft, having done so with lefty Andrew Miller a couple years ago.

Scouting director David Chadd said upon drafting Perry that how he progresses as a pitcher would determine how quickly he rises through the farm system. Perry was a shortstop, not a pitcher, in high school and didn't convert until he arrived at Arizona.

Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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