(June 5, 2014)
Becoming the first team to make the first overall pick a third consecutive year, the Houston Astros chose left-hander Brady Aiken Thursday to open the baseball draft.
Aiken, from Cathedral Catholic High School in San Diego, told MLB Network he models his game after David Price.
Aiken's fastball hit 97 mph this spring. He is 6-foot-3, 210 pounds is committed to UCLA. Baseball America quoted one scout saying his curve was "silly good."
With the No. 1 overall pick in each of the previous two drafts, the Astros selected Stanford right-hander Mark Appel in 2013 and Puerto Rican high school shortstop Carlos Correa in 2012. Both are playing for high Class A Lancaster (Calif.) this season.
Houston's previous No. 1 overall selections, left-hander Floyd Bannister in 1976 and third baseman Phil Nevin in 1992, each made one All-Star Game.
The only other high school left-handers chosen No. 1 overall were David Clyde by the Texas Rangers in 1973 and Brien Taylor by the New York Yankees in 1991. Clyde had a mediocre career. Taylor got injured and never made the majors.
Commissioner Bud Selig opened the draft by acknowledging the memory of Don Zimmer, the baseball lifer who died Wednesday at 83.
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