Kyler Murray, football player: The Oakland A’s top draft choice in 2019 has announced he is “firmly and fully committing my life and time to becoming an NFL quarterback.” This means that he will not only be in the 2019 NFL draft, but presumably is abandoning his career as a baseball player.
The Oakland A’s drafted Murray as an outfielder with the 9th pick of the 2018 MLB Draft, and gave him a $4.66 million signing bonus in a deal that allowed Murray to return to the University of Oklahoma to play quarterback in his junior season at OU. Murray had a stellar season, winning the Heisman Trophy and prompting talk for months now that he would forego MLB, repay his bonus to the A’s, and seek to make it in the NFL instead.
Murray was seen as a potential high first round pick in the 2015 MLB Draft, when he was a high school senior out of Allen, Texas, but he opted out of the draft, making himself ineligible to be selected. Oakland rolled the dice on his immense talent in 2018, but that gamble has backfired, as they now will have nothing to show for the #9 pick from last summer.
UPDATE — Jeff Passan with some details on the signing bonus repayment and lack of compensatory pick:
Kyler Murray will return $1.29 million of the $1.5 million signing bonus money the Oakland A’s gave him last year. He forfeits the remaining $3.16 million due March 1. The A’s will put him on the restricted list and retain Murray’s rights, but they don’t get a comp draft pick.— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) February 11, 2019