USF junior RHP Sanford signs with Giants
USF junior right-hander Shawn Sanford, picked in the 13th round by the Giants, has opted to sign a pro contract rather than return for his senior year with the Bulls.
"It was kind of a spontaneous decision. I love USF so much and was looking forward to next year, but it's a little more promising for me to start in the pros this year," said Sanford, already in Arizona and getting a physical with the Giants.
Sanford went 5-4 with a 4.68 ERA as a junior, leading the Bulls with 64 strikeouts. USF returns its top two starting pitchers in Randy Fontanez and Derrick Stultz, but now the Bulls need a third starter to round out their weekend rotation for 2010.
Sanford had said he was disappointed not to be drafted higher and was initially thinking about returning for his senior year, or trying to play in a summer college league with the hopes of getting a higher offer from the Giants.
"I've been directly on the fence," Sanford said. "My heart wanted to come back, but in the end I had to make a decision to sign and go to work."
Now he'll report to Oregon, where he'll make his pro debut with the Salem-Keizer Volcanoes -- the same team where former USF pitcher Dan Otero got his start in 2007. Sanford said San Francisco envisions him being a reliever down the road, but he'll start his pro career as a starter.
Sanford is the second player the Bulls have lost to the draft, following signee Chase Greene, a 16th-round pick of the Mets who said this week he too would be signing a pro contract. Two other signees, Jefferson's Chad Taylor and Alonso's Ray Delphey, said Thursday that they would be attending USF and not signing with the teams that drafted them.