FAYETTEVILLE — Arkansas pitcher Chris Oliver will begin his professional baseball career after agreeing to terms with the Philadelphia Phillies.
The right-hander was selected in the fourth round of the 2014 Major League Baseball Draft last week. He agreed to a contract that will include a $550,000 signing bonus, according to a CBS Sports report.
Oliver spent his first two seasons with the Razorbacks working out of the bullpen, but was elevated to the starting rotation last season. He went 9-4 with a 2.51 ERA, leading the Razorbacks in wins and starts (16).
“I think the thing I’m going to miss the most about Arkansas is the fans,” Oliver said last week. “Having a packed house every weekend and the atmosphere Baum Stadium has under the lights is incredible. The camaraderie that comes from being a Razorback and all the people you meet and the teammates you have is something I will never forget. A lot of great guys come through that program and I was lucky to a part of it.”
The Farmington native was one of six Arkansas players selected in the 40-round draft last week, joining second baseman Brian Anderson, first baseman Eric Fisher, outfielder Tyler Spoon, and pitchers Jalen Beeks and Michael Gunn.
Oliver is the first Razorback to sign. Spoon is the only one of the six drafted players expected to return to the Razorbacks for the 2014 season.
— Robbie Neiswanger • Arkansas News Bureau