No. 1 pick Mark Appel has already signed, as have 3-4-5 picks Jonathan Gray, Kohl Stewart, and Clint Frazier, but Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reports that No. 2 pick Kris Bryant is “nowhere close to a deal” with the Cubs.
July 15 is the deadline for the Cubs to sign the San Diego slugger who nearly lapped the field with an NCAA-leading 31 homers this season and Heyman says he’s asking for more than the slot recommended $6.7 million bonus.
Bryant is represented by agent Scott Boras, who not surprisingly thinks his client should receive the draft’s highest bonus. As a junior Bryant has the same leverage as Mark Appel last season in that he can go back to school for his senior year, but the big difference is that Appel fell to No. 8 last year and passed on a $3.8 million offer from the Pirates. Bryant doesn’t have nearly as much to gain and a lot more to lose.
Pirates right-hander Joe Musgrove is done for the year after suffering an abdominal wall muscle strain and stress reaction in his pelvic bone. While he isn’t expected to undergo surgery or miss additional time in 2019, he’s been prescribed six weeks of rest before resuming any baseball-related activities.
Musgrove, 25, finished out his third year in Pittsburgh with a 6-9 record in 19 starts, backed by a 4.06 ERA, 1.8 BB/9, and 7.8 SO/9. Despite logging a career-high 115 1/3 innings at the major league level, he’s also been dogged by a string of injuries, from the shoulder strain that robbed him of eight weeks at the start of the season to an index finger infection that kept him sidelined for a minimum 10-day stay on the disabled list in June.
While he works his way back up to full strength yet again, rookie right-hander Nick Kingham is expected to cover for him and will make a spot start during the Pirates’ series finale against the Brewers on Sunday. The 26-year-old righty hasn’t started a single game for the team since August 1, and currently carries a 4.69 ERA, 2.7 BB/9, and 8.1 SO/9 over 71 innings out of the rotation and bullpen.