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2012 MLB Draft: Mark Appel 'Leaning Against' Signing With Pirates, According To Report

Jon Heyman tweets that Pirates first-round draft pick Mark Appel is "leaning against" signing.

Mark Appel, rhp picked No. 8 overall, is leaning against signing w/ the pirates for $3.8M to instead return to stanford

Scott Boras is Appel's advisor, and Heyman is known to publish pretty much everything Boras tells him. Note that this tweet merely says that Appel is "leaning against" signing, not that he isn't signing. This sounds like something Boras is floating out there as a way of increasing his client's leverage.

The problem is that his client has very little of that. If the Pirates have already offered $3.8 million, they can't really go higher without running afoul of MLB's new draft rules and losing their first-round pick next year, which I'm sure they won't be willing to do. And if they don't sign Appel, they'll get the No. 9 overall pick in next year's draft, in addition to their normal first-round pick. Also, Appel is very likely to lose money if he chooses to forgo signing and reenter the draft next year, because getting a big bonus as a college senior is hard and because it's nearly impossible to get $3.8 million without being drafted in the first dozen picks.

For more on the Pirates, check out Bucs Dugout.

Photographs by dizfunk used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.