Pirates First Round Pick Staying in School
(NEW YORK) -- Pittsburgh Pirates first round pick in the 2012 MLB Draft Mark Appel has decided to play his senior season at Stanford instead of joining the Pirates organization.
Appel, who was offered $3.8 million from the Pirates, becomes the first big name who didn't sign due to baseball's new restrictions on amateur signing bonuses.
Appel was selected with the eighth pick in the draft. Under the new restrictions, that pick was assigned $2.9 million from the drafting team's bonus pool. The Pirates were willing to go 5 percent over the threshold and accept the first level of penalty, a 75 percent tax on the overage, but they weren't willing to go further beyond the threshold where the penalties would include the loss of future draft picks.
"After much thought, prayer and analysis of both opportunities, I came to the conclusion the best decision is to remain at Stanford continuing my studies, finishing my degree, and doing all I can to assist the Cardinal baseball team in our goal to win a national championship," Appel said in a statement. "I greatly valued the prospect of a professional opportunity and I will pursue a professional baseball career after getting my Stanford degree."
This is the second time Appel has failed to sign after being drafted. In 2009 the Detroit Tigers took him in the 15th round of the draft but went to Stanford.
With Apel not signing, the Pirates will now receive an extra first-round pick in the 2013 draft.
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