HOUSTON (CBS Houston) After passing on him a year ago with the first pick, the Astros selected Stanford pitcher Mark Appel with the first pick of the 2013 Major League Baseball Draft Thursday evening.
The 6-foot-4, 195 pound right-hander finished 10-4 with a 2.12 ERA in 2013 at Stanford. In 106.1 innings, he struck out 130 batters while walking just 23 and also lowered his ERA by half a run while increasing his strikeouts from his junior season, despite throwing 24 fewer innings.
Appel also seems to throw what many would refer to as a mid-90’s fastball with a plus fastball and is seen as the pitcher in this year’s draft closest to contributing in the big leagues.
Last Jun, Pittsburgh took him with the 8th pick, but Appel who was a Scott Boras client, did not sign. In fact, He turned down close to $4 million and returned to Stanford where he received his degree in management, science and engineering.
Appel, a Houston native, is Stanford’s all-time leader in strikeouts and was a first-team All American the last two seasons.
Major League Baseball has set July 12 as the deadline for new players to sign, but since Appel is a college senior, that deadline does not exist.
In the event Appel does not sign by next year’s draft, the Astros will receive the second pick of the 2014 draft as compensation.
The first pick in the 2013 draft was valued by Major League Baseball at over $7.7 million.