SAN FRANCISCO—The San Francisco Giants have signed top international shortstop prospect Lucius Fox Jr. for a $6 million bonus, the largest amount ever for an international free agent in the team’s history. The press conference for the announcement of Fox’s signing was held in the Bahamas on Thursday, July 2.

Thanks to a loophole, Fox became exempt from the Amateur Draft and was able to enter the MLB by signing through free agency on July 2, the first day of the signing period, which also coincided with his 18th  birthday. In doing this, players can potentially be signed for larger sums than by being drafted.

The press conference where the Giants signed top prospect Lucius Fox.
The press conference where the Giants signed top prospect Lucius Fox (pictured second from left).

Fox was born in Nassau in the Bahamas, but attended American Heritage High School in Plantation, FL, a city just outside of Fort Lauderdale. He returned to the Bahamas shortly before being drafted.

The 6 foot and 2 inch tall and 170-pound Fox is ranked the No. 3 international prospect by the MLB and among the top 4 prospects by many analysts. Had he entered the draft, many believe he would most likely have fared well in the first round. Fox is known for being quick and having a strong arm ideal for a solid shortstop. He had previously displayed his talents at the Perfect Game National Showcase in 2015.

Aside from the Giants, Fox attracted the attention of several organizations including the Chicago Cubs, the Texas Rangers, and the Los Angeles Dodgers. The Dodgers were especially considered top contenders to sign Fox given their having a leg up the competition in regards to their money available for free agents. Many expected Fox to sign with Los Angeles for $4 million before ultimately signing with San Francisco.

Along with Fox, the Giants also signed Venezuela’s Ricardo Genoves for $550,000 on Thursday.

The Giants are currently on a five-game losing streak following their back-to-back losses against the Nationals, accumulating their W-L record since the start of the season to 4-6. They face Washington one more time before facing the New York Mets back home at AT&T Park.