ARLINGTON -- The A's are "very close" to inking a deal with first-round Draft pick Michael Choice and could announce the signing as early as Thursday, according to a baseball source. The A's have not confirmed the deal, but according to Choice's agent, Jeff Frye, the agreement is worth $2 million, pending a physical. Choice, Frye said, is scheduled to be at the Ballpark in Arlington on Thursday, when the A's close out a three-game set with the Rangers. The 20-year-old outfielder, who grew up nearby and went to the University of Texas at Arlington, would be just the second player out of this year's top 10 picks to reach a deal -- the other being Christian Colon, drafted fourth overall by the Royals.
Choice, a 20-year-old outfielder, has what A's scouting director Eric Kubota deems "a college bat that comes with upside. Tremendous power potential." The organization expects Choice's large dose of power to nicely complement his impressive abilities in center field, where he hopes to remain as his professional career begins. He owns the all-time home run record at Arlington, where he averaged a long ball every 17.8 at-bats and was subsequently named a junior All-American. In 60 games for the Mavericks this year, he hit .383 to go along with a .568 on-base percentage and .704 slugging mark. He struck out just 54 times while managing 76 walks.
Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.