If it seems that it's a little early for the Royals to be signing their first round pick, then you're right, it is. This is the first time there hasn't been a drawn-out summer negotiation process since Billy Butler in 2004.
By signing Colon in late June, the Royals avoided a prolonged negotiation period that consumed much of their summer with the late signings of their previous five first-round picks -- pitcher Aaron Crow last year, first baseman Eric Hosmer in 2008, third baseman Mike Moustakas in 2007, pitcher Luke Hochevar in 2006 and third baseman Alex Gordon in 2005.
A good sign, no? The Royals were reportedly expecting to pay a little less for Colon's services so the fact that they bucked up and paid him -- and got it done early -- is a good thing.