Aiken and family arrive in Houston, signing close
California prep left-handed pitcher Brady Aiken, the No. 1 overall pick by the Astros in the First-Year Player Draft, arrived from San Diego on Monday with his parents in preparation for signing a contract with the Astros in the next few days.
Aiken, 17, was taken by the Astros out of Central Catholic High School in San Diego, making him only the third left-handed high school pitcher to be selected with the first overall pick, joining Brien Taylor (Yankees, 1991) and Houston’s David Clyde (Rangers, 1973).
The Astros could announce a deal with Aiken as early as Tuesday.
“It feels great,” Aiken said. “I’m excited. I’m really excited to take this next step in my life.”
MLBPipeline.com’s Jim Callis reported earlier this month the Astros and Aiken had agreed to a $6.5-million signing bonus, which would tie the record for the largest given to a high school pitcher. The Pirates gave Jameson Taillon a $6.5-million signing bonus after taking him with the second pick in 2010.
The slot value for the No. 1 overall pick is $7,922,100.
“It means a lot,” Aiken said. “It means the Astros really invested in me and they’re really looking forward to having me do what I can do for them.”
Aiken arrived with his parents, Linda and Jim Aiken, and his sister, Halle, who plays volleyball at San Diego State.
“We’re very, very excited to be here,” Jim Aiken said. “(Tuesday) is a big day for us. We’re really looking forward to it.”
Aiken posted a 7-0 record and a 1.06 ERA in 11 starts in his senior season. He was a 2014 Perfect Game first team All-American and an All-Region first team in California. He led Team USA to the gold medal at the 18-and-under World Cup in Taiwan last September by winning both of his starts — including a championship-game performance against Japan in which he struck out 10 and allowed one run over seven innings.
Once he officially signs, Aiken will likely be sent to the team’s Spring Training complex in Kissimmee, Fla. He will likely be held to a strict innings limit this summer once his season starts.
“I know all the fans and everyone are looking forward to this and I’m looking forward to it this just as much as they are,” he said. “I’m more excited than they are probably to be honest with you. I’m really excited to see what the future holds.”