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Nationals, top pick Harper reach deal

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Associated Press
August 17, 2010
— Top overall draft pick Bryce Harper and the Washington Nationals reached an agreement on a $9.9 million, five-year contract shortly before the deadline of midnight EDT Monday night.

A year ago, the Nationals agreed to a record-breaking $15.1 million, four-year contract with No. 1 draft choice Stephen Strasburg a little more than a minute before the clock ran out. Strasburg made his big league debut June 8, the day after Harper was drafted.


The 6-foot-3, 205-pound Harper is a 17-year-old power-hitting junior college catcher the Nationals plan to convert to an outfielder. He’s the first JUCO player taken with the first overall selection.


Harper hit .443 with 31 homers and 98 RBIs in his first season at the College of Southern Nevada, which plays in a league that uses wood bats. He skipped his final two years of high school.


Brewers unable to sign


first-round pick Covey


The Milwaukee Brewers were unable to agree to a contact with their first-round draft pick, right-hander Dylan Covey, before Monday night’s signing deadline.


Covey has been diagnosed with diabetes, and Brewers general manager Doug Melvin said that played a role in his decision not to sign.


Melvin says the team was willing to sign him, but Covey “felt with the management needed and discipline involved with diabetes it was necessary to stay close to home.” He also has an offer from the University of San Diego.


Covey, the 14th overall pick, went 7-1 with a 0.40 ERA and 3 saves for Maranatha High School in Pasadena, Calif., last season.



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