ST. PETERSBURG — Before Thursday, Rays second-round pick John Doxakis had only experienced the Trop in video games, when he would frequently play as the Rays. In career mode, he’d play as video game versions of Carlos Pena, David Price and Evan Longoria.
“But I’ve never seen it in person,” Doxakis said Thursday shortly after finalizing his deal with the Rays. “It’s awesome.”
The 6-foot-4 left-hander will begin his real-life career in the Tampa Bay organization.
Doxakis signed for at slot, which is a $1.13 million bonus for his pick.
With the signing of Doxakis, the draft’s 61st overall pick out of Texas A&M, the Rays have signed all but one of their four Day 1 selections. The team has yet to finalize a deal with No. 36 pick J.J. Goss, but he’s expected to sign within the next few days.
Doxakis, who was 7-4 with a 2.06 ERA in 16 outings with the Aggies, is now eager to start his pro career. He will report to short-season Class-A Hudson Valley, where his innings will likely be limited after logging 104 2/3 frames during his college season.
Doxakis was drafted one day after his college season ended in the NCAA regionals, the last of four picks the Rays had in the first two rounds of the draft.
“You never want to see your college season come to an end,” Doxakis said. “But sitting around for that week and a half, just waiting to get up here was a little stressful, but now that I’m here, I’m glad it’s over with. It does feel good to get it over with and get it moving on.”
Contact Eduardo A. Encina at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow @EddieInTheYard.