It shocked many when the Astros decided to go with shortstop Carlos Correa over Stanford right-hander Mark Appel with the first pick in the MLB draft. As many speculated, Appel’s bonus demands may well have made the choice for them.
A source told Tom Krasovic that Appel, who is being advised by Scott Boras, turned down a $6 million offer from the Astros before the draft.
The Astros had a total draft budget of approximately $11.2 million, so they could have gone higher to sign Appel, but they clearly were hoping to save some money for other picks. Drafting Correa instead will likely allow them to do so.
As for Appel, he’s going to have problems now. The Pirates’ total draft budget is just under $6.6 million, so unless they’re willing to risk losing future draft picks, they’re not going to be able to give him even the $6 million the Astros were proposing.
Jon Morosi reports that the Blue Jays and Royals are making progress on a trade involving starter Francisco Liriano. Morosi notes that other teams are still involved with the Jays on Liriano as well.
Liriano, 33, has struggled mightily this season. He carries a 5.99 ERA with a 70/42 K/BB ratio over 76 2/3 innings. By most metrics, this is one of the worst seasons of the lefty’s career.
The Royals acquired a trio of pitchers earlier this week from the Padres: Brandon Maurer, Ryan Buchter, and Trevor Cahill. Adding Liriano would bolster the team’s rotation depth but might not do much beyond that.
Despite a sluggish start to the season, the Royals went 17-9 in June and are 14-8 in July to put themselves right back in the thick of things in the AL Central. They’re just one and a half games behind the first-place Indians, which explains their aggressiveness leading up to Monday’s non-waiver trade deadline.
Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports reports that the Miami Marlins are “now open to trading” starter Dan Straily.
Straily is controllable through 2020 and is a solid mid-to-back rotation starter, so you’d think the Marlins would want to hang on to him, but given that all of the starting pitching available right now comes with a high price tag, the Marlins could probably get a lot in return if they were to deal him.
Straily has a 3.84 ERA and a 107/33 K/BB ratio in 117 1/3 innings this season.