Brady Aiken and the Houston Astros may still be able to work out a deal that would result in the Astros signing their #1 overall pick, per reports that are out today.
The story linked above indicates that the other 29 MLB clubs have agreed that the Astros may continue to negotiate with, and potentially sign, Aiken, even though the deadline for clubs to sign their draft picks has come and gone.
Aiken, as most of you probably know, agreed to a $6.5 million deal with the Astros before a physical caused the Astros some concern about his UCL. The Astros offered $5 million, which Aiken rejected. The Astros had also used their #4 pick on high school pitcher Jacob Nix, and agreed to a $1.5 million deal with him; however, they would only have sufficient funds in their bonus pool if Aiken signed for $6.5 million or less, and when they didn't lock up Aiken, they were forced to renege on their agreement with Nix, resulting in Nix filing a grievance against the Astros.
The entire thing has the potential to be ugly and messy for MLB, which would seem to be why the league is letting the Astros try to work out a deal to sign Aiken. In addition, the story linked above indicates that Aiken would only sign if the Astros were to then trade Aiken...normally, draft picks cannot be traded until a year after they sign, but again, with MLB trying to avoid grievances and drama, it appears they are willing to be flexible on that issue as well.
Should the Astros sign Aiken, that will impact the Rangers significantly, as Aiken was expected to enter the 2015 draft, and be one of the top talents available. In addition, the Astros are currently slated to automatically get the #2 overall pick in the 2015 draft as compensation for not signing Aiken. If the Astros and Aiken work out a deal, then presumably the Astros would not get that pick as compensation, which would mean the Rangers would be picking one slot higher, unless they have the worst record in baseball (and thus get the #1 overall pick).
In addition, Aiken no longer being available would mean fewer choices for the Rangers at the top of the draft.
UPDATE -- Per Jon Heyman, the Astros are working on a deal to settle with Jacob Nix, not Brady Aiken, and Bud Selig apparently mis-heard when he made the comments referenced in the above piece.
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