Astros select Brady Aiken with No. 1 pick of 2014 MLB Draft

Rich Schultz

Aiken is the first high school pitcher drafted first overall since Brien Taylor was picked No. 1 by the Yankees in 1991.

The Houston Astros selected left-handed pitcher Brady Aiken out of Cathedral Catholic High School in San Diego, Calif. with the first overall pick in the 2014 MLB Draft. Aiken, a 6'4, 200-pound left-hander, is the first high school pitcher drafted first overall since Brien Taylor was picked first by the Yankees in 1991.

Aiken was ranked the top prospect in the draft by Baseball America, by Keith Law of ESPN, and by MLB.com.

"The UCLA recruit was known more for his athleticism and his feel for pitching than for any single pitch, but increased velocity to go along with that pitchability has been the buzz of the spring," wrote Jonathan Mayo of MLB.com. "He has the chance to develop three above-average or better offerings."

Aiken posted a 1.06 ERA while striking out 111 batters and walking 15 in 59⅔ innings during his senior season.

Law described Aiken as "A 17-year-old left-hander with a great body and delivery, a fastball up to 95 mph and feel for both a curveball and a changeup, Aiken is the best talent in this draft class and offers the team that drafts him a clean record of light usage on top of his tremendous potential."

The Astros are the first team ever to draft No. 1 overall in three consecutive years. They selected shortstop Carlos Correa out of the Puerto Rico Academy with the top pick in 2012, then picked Stanford right-handed pitcher Mark Appel with the first pick in 2013.

"Having spent most of my drafting career picking at the very end of the first round, moving to the front of the first round is definitely a different experience,"Astros general manager Jeff Luhnow told Brian McTaggart of MLB.com. "All three of these Drafts have been different. They have their own personality and own mix of players."

The allotted slot bonus by Major League Baseball for the top pick is $7,922,100, per Baseball America, though Houston was able to sign both Corea and Appel for under their respective slot bonuses.

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