As of 2:45 Friday afternoon, there's still no indication that the Pirates have reached an agreement with No. 9 overall 2012 MLB Draft pick Mark Appel. The deadline for signings is 5:00 p.m.
Twitter is currently filled with speculation too, um, speculative to bother posting here, but the summary is that no one knows if he'll sign. Although I'm less certain than I was a week ago, I still think he will. He's advised by Scott Boras, whose usual pattern is to wait until the absolute last second to begin negotiating, so the fact that Appel isn't under contract yet isn't necessarily cause for alarm. And not signing, regardless of how much he and Boras might dislike the draft rules, just doesn't make much sense, at least not from a financial perspective. Next year, Appel is unlikely to get more than the $3 million-plus the Pirates are likely offering, because he'll be a college senior and because the draft rules make it very hard to even get $3 million for picks outside the first round.
The Pirates would get the No. 9 pick in next year's draft if Appel doesn't sign.
The Bucs signed 18th-rounder John Kuchno, from Ohio State, earlier in the afternoon.
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