116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
CEDAR RAPIDS — Levi Usher is signed, sealed and soon to be delivered.
The Cedar Rapids Prairie grad and former Kirkwood Community College outfielder is now a former University of Louisville outfielder, too, after signing a professional baseball contract with the Kansas City Royals.
Usher was picked in the 10th round Monday by Kansas City, the 295th-overall selection. He is scheduled to leave Friday for the Royals’ minor-league complex in Surprise, Ariz.
“I’m just really excited,” Usher said. “I didn’t have a team picked out that I really wanted to go to. Then the day of the draft when I heard the Royals had called, and there was a deal they were willing to take, I was pretty excited. Kind of pleasantly surprised. Just kind of like ‘Oh, wow. I think I would enjoy going to the Royals organization.’”
Usher said multiple teams contacted his advisor (now agent) Monday, and he thought he was getting drafted by someone other than the Royals. The slot value set by MLB for his pick was $153,500, but he said his signing bonus is below that number.
The Royals’ high-Class A affiliate is in Quad Cities, so it’s entirely possible Usher will end up playing very close to home at some point in his career. At home, considering the Cedar Rapids Kernels are in the Midwest League with QC.
“I think what I liked about it is we came back with a counter-offer , and they upped their original offer. So that just shows that they had interest,” Usher said. “The money isn’t a huge deal, but just to see they were able to go up a little bit in the price kind of showed they had interest. The money doesn’t really matter to me. I just hoped they enjoyed having me and they had interest in me. I think that was the main priority going into the draft.”
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