Astros select McCullers in compensation first round

The Houston Astros have selected right-handed pitcher Lance McCullers with the 41st overall pick in the compensation first round of the 2012 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft, Astros Assistant General Manager/Director of Scouting Bobby Heck announced tonight.

McCullers, 18, posted a 13-0 record and a 0.18 ERA with 140 strikeouts in 77.1 innings pitched for Jesuit High School in Tampa, FL. He led his club to the Class 5A state semifinals and picked up the Gatorade High School Player of the Year Award in 2012. He also won the 2011 Jackie Robinson Award, which recognizes the country’s top rising senior. McCullers was named an All-American by Louisville Slugger and Baseball America, which ranked him as the 13th overall prospect in the 2012 Draft.

McCullers is the son of former pitcher Lance McCullers Sr., who played in parts of seven Major League seasons for San Diego (1985-88), New York-AL (1989-90), Detroit (1990) and Texas (1992).

The 41st overall selection was obtained by Houston in compensation for the free agent loss of shortstop Clint Barmes.




Position: Right-handed pitcher

Bats/Throws: Left/Right

Height/Weight: 6-2/205

Age: 18

High School: Jesuit HS, Tampa, FL

Tonight’s portion of the draft included only the first round out of a scheduled 40, and will resume tomorrow beginning at 11 a.m. CT. Rounds 2-15 are scheduled for tomorrow and the draft will conclude with the final 25 rounds on Wednesday, June 6.



Correa, 17, played amateur baseball at the Puerto Rico Baseball Academy in Gurabo, P.R. The 6-foot-4 shortstop is the highest-drafted player ever out of Puerto Rico. That label was held by catcher Ramon Castro, who was picked 17th overall by Houston in 1994. Correa was named a Rawlings First Team All-American this season, in his final year at the Puerto Rico Baseball Academy.

“I feel so excited to be the number one pick. I just worked hard to be here,” said Correa, who was one of a select group of amateur players at the MLB Network Studio in Secaucas, NJ, tonight. “I feel proud to be here and I’m excited.”

Correa is the first shortstop taken first overall since 2008 (Tim Beckham-TB), and is just the fourth shortstop taken first overall since 1994. Other notable players who were selected as shortstops with the first overall pick were Shawon Dunston (1982-CHC), B.J. Surhoff (1985-MIL), Chipper Jones (1990-ATL), Alex Rodriguez (1993-SEA) and Justin Upton (2005-ARI).