Astros have big day with Correa, McCullers
Jeff Luhnow admitted Monday it takes a few years to fully judge how well or how poorly an organization did in the First-Year Player Draft, but the Astros certainly appear to have put themselves in great position by taking Puerto Rican shortstop Carlos Correa and Tampa high school pitcher Lance McCullers with their top two picks.
While almost everyone had Stanford pitcher Mark Appel going to the Astros at No. 1, Houston went with the 17-year-old Correa, who wowed the Astros and Luhnow with his ability during a workout in Kissimmee, Fla., on May 27. He’s committed to the University of Miami, but Luhnow left no doubt they would be able to sign him.
“I suspect Miami will not see him, unless he’s visiting some friends,” he said.
McCullers, a University of Florida commit, is a hard thrower who put up gaudy numbers in high school. Considered one of the best arms in the Draft, McCullers slipped out of the first round what were deemed to signability issues, which Luhnow downplayed.
“I believe that we will sign Lance McCullers and he will be a Houston Astro,” said Luhnow, who added that McCullers would immediately become one of their best pitching prospects.
McCullers was 13-0 with a 0.18 ERA with 140 strikeouts and only 30 walks and 28 hits in 77 1/3 innings of work in high school this year. He also hit .280 with 27 runs scored and 21 RBIs.
The Astros are on the clock and will open the Draft at 11 a.m. CT on Tuesday with the 61st overall pick, but Day 1 couldn’t have gone much better.