A week after he was drafted No. 1 overall by the Astros, Brady Aiken was reported by MLB.com to have agreed to terms with the club for a $6.5 million bonus.
A week after that, Aiken and his family went to Houston for him to take his physical, sign his contract and begin his professional career. Aiken was supposed to throw out the first pitch at an Astros’ home game, and the team already had made news by tweeting a photo of an Aiken Astros jersey.
But days passed, and Aiken’s signing never became official. FoxSports.com’s Ken Rosenthal first reported the possibility that something was amiss last week, and on Monday CBSSports.com’s John Heyman is reporting a problem in the physical.
Heyman reported that there was an issue with the lefthander’s elbow ligament, although it was unclear what specific issue a physical exam brought to light.
According to the report, the Astros are offering to do a deal for $5 million, which would be $1.5 million less than the previous agreement. The slot value for the No. 1 pick this year is $7,922,100.
BA has not been able to independently confirm the Aiken news. A written request for comment to Excel Sports Management, Aiken’s advisors, was not immediately returned.
The San Diego prep lefthander became just the third high school pitcher ever selected with the No. 1 overall pick in 50 years of Major League Baseball’s June draft.
He doesn’t lack for confidence. The 6-foot-4, 205-pounder out of Cathedral Catholic High compared himself to lefthanders David Price and Clayton Kershaw during his introductory conference call with Houston media.
“We wanted the best player for the organization,” Astros general manager Jeff Luhnow said at the time. “And the amount of time it takes to get to the big leagues was not a huge factor. Having said that, for a kid who is 17 years old, I’m not going to put any limitation on how quickly this player can move.”
For now, it appears it won’t be very quick, since the sides have yet to come to an agreement, a month after the draft,