A's, MLB meet with Heisman Trophy winner Murray

Heather Diaz
January 14, 2019

The Oakland Athletics can sign Kyler Murray to a major league deal and offer him significant guaranteed money to choose baseball over football without running afoul of Major League Baseball rules, league sources told ESPN, the latest twist in a sport-vs. -sport battle for the Heisman Trophy victor that's expected to be resolved in the coming days.

While the draft declaration won't tip Murray's hand, he is facing a decision.

The Oakland Athletics are not going down without a fight.

The group from the A's organization will reportedly be fronted by team president Billy Beane.

MLB Network's Jon Morosi reported that MLB sent marketing executives to the meeting to outline Murray's potential earnings in a baseball career. A report last week said Murray is expected to declare for the NFL Draft.

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Perhaps this news will actually hurt Murray's draft stock. Part of the deal was allowing Murray to play one more season of college football - in which he put up historic numbers for the University of Oklahoma and won the Heisman. The A's are in a tough spot with the possibility of losing Murray entirely. Getting him to play baseball over football would be a coup for the league considering he'd need a couple of years in the minors before he reaches the majors.

But it seems MLB is equally prepared to consider all options to keep Murray in baseball, a sport that is increasingly desperate to grow star players.

Murray's contract gave him $4.8 million in bonus money from being taken ninth, which means he's guaranteed to have that coming in, but there's now a near consensus that he will be a late first round pick in the upcoming NFL Draft.

At the risk of using a trite phrase, Murray could be playing hardball with the A's.

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