HOUSTON SELECTIONS (DAY 1-2): The Houston Astros have selected 10 players through the first two days of the 2013 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft. To date, the Astros have selected two of every position: right-handed pitchers, left-handed pitchers, infielders, outfielders and catchers.
"We're really pleased at what we were able to accomplish in the top 10 rounds today" said Astros Director of Amateur Scouting Mike Elias. "We've selected some players who know how to play the game and have had success on big stages. These are young men that play premium positions, who we feel could advance quickly and provide Major League value in a short amount of time."
The Astros selected seven of their 10 draft picks out of the collegiate ranks.
Today's portion of the draft included rounds 3-10 out of a scheduled 40. The final day of the draft will resume tomorrow beginning at 12 p.m. CT and will include rounds 11-40.
SUPER REGIONALS: Four of the Astros draft choices will be playing in Super Regionals that begin tomorrow. LHP Kent Emanuel and C Brian Holberton with North Carolina will host South Carolina for a three-game series, while Vanderbilt and IFs Conrad Gregor and Tony Kemp will host Louisville in a three-game series.
COLLEGE RANKS: The Astros first five selections in the 2013 Draft were out of the collegiate ranks. The last time Houston selected five consecutive college players to begin a draft was in 2001, when the Astros' first 11 choices were college players. Seven of the 11 eventually made the Majors, including 2B Chris Burke (1st round) and RHP Kirk Saarloos (3rd round).
DOUBLE UP: For the second straight year, the Astros selected teammates in the top five rounds. Last year, Houston selected RHP Brady Rodgers (3rd) and OF Andrew Aplin (5th) out of Arizona State University.
THE PITCH: The Astros selected three pitchers as their first three picks in the 2013 Draft. The last time Houston drafted three straight pitchers to open a draft was in 2002 (six straight). Three of those six eventually made the Majors.
ASTROS SELECT RHP MARK APPEL WITH 1ST SELECTION IN THE 2013 DRAFT
Appel, 21, went 10-4 with four complete games and a 2.12 ERA (25ER/106.1IP) as a senior this season at Stanford University. He recorded 130 strikeouts in his 106.1 innings pitched and allowed just a .203 opponent's batting average. Appel is one of just 10 semifinalists for the National Pitcher of the Year Award as named by the College Baseball Hall of Fame.
"We're absolutely thrilled that this came to a conclusion today and that we selected Mark Appel with the first selection in the draft," said Astros General Manager Luhnow. "He makes us significantly better and we believe this is a special player that is going to be a part of our championship team someday."
Appel's been highly decorated in his four seasons at Stanford, having already won the Pitcher of the Year award in 2012. He is also a two-time Louisville Slugger first team All-American and is a semifinalist for the Golden Spikes Award and the Howser Trophy. Last week, he was named first team All-Pac-12 Conference.