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Mark Appel on track to make his pro debut in early July

Jun 24, 2013, 1:18 PM EDT

Milwaukee Brewers v Houston Astros Getty Images

Mark Appel signed quickly with Houston for nearly $1.5 million less than the recommended slot bonus for the No. 1 overall pick and now the Astros are making plans for his professional debut.

Appel hasn’t done any throwing since being drafted, but Brian Smith of the Houston Chronicle reports that he’s set to begin a throwing program after meeting with the Astros’ brass at their spring training complex in Florida.

Next on the agenda will be some simulated game action, followed by joining a rookie-ball team, with Appel’s minor-league debut likely taking place in early July.

  1. jm91rs - Jun 24, 2013 at 1:21 PM

    I wonder why the guy would take $1.5M less than slot?

    • raysfan1 - Jun 24, 2013 at 1:35 PM

      1) He has no leverage. Take the $ or don’t play ball for a year (or play in an independent league for a pittance) since he’s done with college. Also, he passed on signing as a first rounder last year–very likely would be drafted much lower next year and thus lose a lot of $.
      2) Teams have a set pool of $ for their draft picks under the new CBA. Him signing for less means more money available to sign other guys to hopefully make the Astros future brighter. If he looks like the real deal as he progresses through the minors, the Astros will be wanting to lock him up with a long term contract soon enough.

      • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Jun 24, 2013 at 2:27 PM

        He still had plenty of leverage. As a college senior he doesn’t have to sign by the deadline in a month, meaning a ton of the Astros’ draft pool was up for grabs (roughly 2/3rds). If they didn’t sign Appel, they’d lose over $7M of money to sign other picks. His leverage is decreased in that he could only go to indy ball, but he wasn’t exactly bent over a barrel.

      • stex52 - Jun 24, 2013 at 3:53 PM

        I’m assuming he wants to be an Astro because of local connections. Boras didn’t negotiate very hard; he was all over the HouChron talking about his “good relationship” with present management and all that.

        No one can know for sure, but I am assuming that Appel told Boras he wanted a deal with Houston at a reasonable number for him and that is what Boras did. The fact they drafted him says to me that they had enough information to know it would work about this way. Most local press was guessing they would go with Gray at #1.

  2. modellforprez - Jun 24, 2013 at 1:25 PM

    i hope he blows out his arm on the first pitch he throws. and then blows it out again…..

    • raysfan1 - Jun 24, 2013 at 1:38 PM

      Wishing painful injury upon somebody you don’t know. Nice. Your mama must be so proud.

      • zoel0005 - Jun 24, 2013 at 2:32 PM

        It’s called sarcasm, dude.

      • paperlions - Jun 24, 2013 at 3:15 PM

        You must not be familiar with MFPs posting. He’s not sarcastic, he’s just an ass.

    • specialkindofstupid - Jun 24, 2013 at 1:51 PM

      i hope he blows out his arm on the first pitch he throws. and then blows it out again

      If he blows out his arm after the 1st pitch, I hope they don’t let him throw a 2nd pitch. That would just be crazy.

      • jcmeyer10 - Jun 24, 2013 at 2:56 PM

        I dunno, Dusty might just be crazy enough to do it.

    • stlouis1baseball - Jun 24, 2013 at 2:47 PM

      Wow Art. That is an incredibly positive post. Thank you for providing good energy.

  3. 161andriver - Jun 24, 2013 at 1:28 PM

    I live near Troy, NY where he is expected to join short season Tri City in the NY-Penn League. I would love to catch a glimpse of this guy. I managed to catch Bryce Harper in Syracuse last year, didn’t quite look as comfortable playing i front of 1,000 people in 55 degree weather as he does in front of 30k plus.

  4. josemartez - Jun 24, 2013 at 1:34 PM

    By pro debut, do they mean the majors? Sorry if that’s a dumb question, but I don’t follow minor league/draft stuff so I don’t know what constitutes “pro level”.

    • raysfan1 - Jun 24, 2013 at 1:39 PM

      No, rookie ball, ie the minor leagues.

  5. apmn - Jun 24, 2013 at 1:38 PM

    No shout-out for Harold “Nostradamus” Reynolds?

    • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Jun 24, 2013 at 2:31 PM

      Pro Ball != MLB

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