Quentin Holmes’ dream of playing professional baseball officially is a reality.
The Monsignor McClancy center fielder and second-round pick signed his contract with the Indians on Saturday, the team announced. The deal is worth $988,970, according to MLB.com. It is slightly above his slot value ($969,000) at 64th overall.
“The big attraction with Quentin is his speed,” Brad Grant, the Indians’ senior director of amateur scouting, told reporters after drafting Holmes. “He also has the potential to be a plus defensive player and a very contact-oriented hitter. … He’s a fun player to watch and a great person on and off the field.”
Holmes, ranked No. 33 by MLBPipeline.com and No. 50 by Baseball America, was the highest New York City high school player selected in 21 years — since Jason Marquis of Tottenville was picked in the first round (35th) by the Braves. Holmes passed up a chance to play in the SEC with Mississippi State, with whom he signed last November.
He hit .420 this year at McClancy with 18 extra-base hits, including seven home runs. Holmes scored 33 runs and had 22 stolen bases in 23 opportunities.
Holmes, who turns 18 on Friday, will join the Indians’ team in the Single-A Arizona League. There, he will get a chance to play against former McClancy teammate Charlie Neuweiler, a pitcher who signed with the Royals last week after being taken in the fifth round (150th overall).
Neuweiler had allowed two runs, one earned, on one hit and struck out three in 2 ¹/₃ innings coming into Saturday. His team is scheduled to face Holmes’ Indians in August. The two fed off each other to improve during their time at McClancy, which they led to two Catholic final fours.
“We push each other, because we always want to be the best,” Holmes told The Post before the draft. “You have to want it more than anybody else. The work that we put in, the motivation that we have, it’s deep down inside.”