Found June 05, 2012 on Steel City Sports Report:
In 2008, the Pittsburgh Pirates selected Pedro Alvarez with the second pick in the MLB Entry Draft.  The pick was monumental for the Pirates who were finally starting to take players based on skill instead of signability.  Standing in their way was Scott Boras, Alvarez's agent, who was -and still is- notorious for getting teams to break the bank at the signing deadline.

It didn't take long for the Pirates to figure out why Boras was renowned for being a tough negotiator.  After reporting that a deal was in place at the signing deadline, Boras claimed that the Pirates did not officially consummate the contract until 12:01 August 16th, two minutes after the deadline.  The MLBPA filed a grievance shortly thereafter, forcing Alvarez on the restricted list.  The Pirates would eventually get a deal done with Pedro, but at a $6 million dollar major league contract.

Last season, the Pirates had to negotiate with Boras on their first two draft picks.  Both Gerrit Cole and Josh Bell had Boras as their "advisor".  The result: Cole signed an $8 million minor league contract and Bell signed for $5 million, the highest figure for a second round draft pick.

This year, the Pirates selected another Scott Boras client, Mark Appel.

Same result?  Don't count on it.

Appel was a consensus top-2 pick heading into the 2012 draft.  Jim Callis had Appel as the top pick in all four of his mock drafts, citing Appel's ability as well as his roots to Houston.  Instead, Appel dropped to the Pirates at number eight with all signs pointing to Boras as the main reason.

As much as small-market fans hate the new draft spending rules, in this particular instance it may work out for the Pirates.  Boras is going to do everything in his power to get Appel top dollar.  After all, he was able to get Mark Teixeira $9.5 million despite being the fifth pick in the 2001 draft.

This time around, Boras may be lucky if his client gets half that much money.  First overall pick, Carlos Correa, his slotted at $7.2 million while Appel's value is slotted at $2.9 million.  The Pirates will probably offer Appel a contract around $4 million which will leave about $2.5 million to sign their next 10 picks.

Boras may think that offer is ridiculous, but before he jumps the gun, he needs to consider the facts.  Mark Appel was the 8th overall pick in one of the weakest draft classes over the last 25 years.  He could opt to go back to Stanford for his senior season.  However, the chances of Appel raising his stock at Stanford are much smaller than a dip in performance or injury.  A $4 million deal may be as good as it gets until Appel reaches free agency 5-6 years from now.

The Pirates have very little to lose in this situation.  Appel is a good pitcher, with the upside to be a frontline starter.  But he's not the second coming of Walter Johnson.  Neal Huntington admitted, Monday night, that Appel was not quite as advanced as Gerrit Cole was at this time last year.  And with Appel's slow, methodical delivery, coupled with a fastball that lacks movement, it will probably take some time for him to move through the system.

If Pittsburgh signs Appel, they will add another talented front-line starter to an organization already deep with pitching.  If the Pirates are unable to sign Appel, they will receive the ninth overall pick next year in what should be a much deeper draft class.  Either way, it appears the Pirates are in a win-win situation.

Your move, Boras.
THE BACKYARD
BEST OF MAXIM
RELATED ARTICLES

Alex Presley recalled, will join club in Cincinnati

Team source w/ Pirates confirms Alex Presley expected to join club in Cincy for tomorrow. Unsure of corresponding move, but Presley on way. — Colin Dunlap (@colin_dunlap) June 5, 2012   Alex Presley definitely deserves this. He’s been crushing the ball in Indianapolis. Going into tonight’s game, he was hitting .290/.392/.661 with five HR in 62 at bats. You would have to think...

Pirates move big-name draft pick from pitcher to third base

The Pirates have been Major League Baseball's biggest spender in the draft the last half-decade, but not much of that has paid off. The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reported Monday that Stetson Allie, the flame-throwing right-hander the team paid $2.2 million as a 2010 second-rounder, is being converted from pitcher to hitter. The news stunned the baseball industry, not only because...

Pirates select Mark Appel eighth overall

With the eighth pick in the 2012 MLB Draft, the Pirates selected RHP Mark Appel from Stanford. The 6’4″ junior is widely considered as the best pitcher in the draft and was even tabbed by some to be the number one overall pick. However, his association with Scott Boras seemed to scare a lot of teams away until the Pirates got on the board. Baseball America had him ranked as the...

Game 55 Live Chat: Pirates at Reds

Pittsburgh Pirates Live Game Chat ©2012 Raise the Jolly Roger. All Rights Reserved..

Game 54 Live Chat: Pirates at Reds

Pittsburgh Pirates Live Game Chat ©2012 Raise the Jolly Roger. All Rights Reserved..

Bailey struggles in Reds' loss to Pirates

CINCINNATI (AP) -- Clint Barmes had three hits and drove in three runs, and the Pittsburgh Pirates extended their home-run tear by hitting three more for an 8-4 victory over the Cincinnati Reds on Tuesday night. Neil Walker hit a two-run homer, and Casey McGehee and Alex Presley had solo shots, giving the Pirates seven homers in their last two games. A.J. Burnett (5-2) won his...

Buckle up: Bucs grab Mark Appel at #8

Going in to the draft tonight, many of us were hoping someone would slide down the board a bit and fall in to the Pirates’ lap at #8. It turned out that while a few of their potential targets were snapped up right away, the guy that many were projecting to go number one fell all the way down to the Pirates. All the way up until Bud Selig took the podium to announce the pick, most...

Pittsburgh Pirates vs. Cincinnati Reds – Game 55

Did anyone really see homers from Neil Walker, Casey McGehee, and Alex Presley coming?  I sure didn’t. That said for how bad the offense has been they haven’t been completely inept at hitting the long ball.  I mean tied for 20th is no great shakes but it’s much better than the 28th their SLG ranks. [...]

Stay hot

The Pirates' figured out one of their long-time Cincinnati nemeses last night when they tagged Homer Bailey for a bunch of runs, tonight they try to get their second win against Johnny Cueto in eight days. They drew some walks off of Cueto last Wednesday, taking four in his seven innings, and eeked out a 2-1 win behind AJ Burnett. Instead of Burnett tonight, the Bucs send Brad...

Day 2 of the 2012 draft reveals the Pirates' Mark Appel strategy: hardball

If Tuesday started with the Pirates surrounded by uncertainty in regards to how they'd handle the signing of Mark Appel, Wednesday is starting with everyone having a pretty good idea of what the Pirates plan to do in their negotiations with Appel and his advisor, Scott Boras. They're not going to stake their whole draft on signing Appel and they're going to try and use...
MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.