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Astros open last day of Draft with pitcher pick

HOUSTON -- The Astros wasted no time looking for more pitching on Day 3, snagging high-school pitcher Devonte German of Bishop Manogue in Reno, Nev., with the first pick in the 11th round (317th overall) of the First-Year Player Draft on Saturday.

German is an elite athlete who starred in three sports in high school. As a baseball player, he is still raw and didn't play much on the road or showcase circuits. A true two-way player, German attracted scouts' attention with his athleticism and promise as an outfielder and on the mound.

"We're pretty excited about the pick," said Astros director of amateur scouting Mike Elias. "We felt he was a Day 2 talent that fell to us, and we were ready all morning to take him in the 11th round."

German throws in the low 90s now and his 6-foot-5, 240-pound frame makes it easy for scouts to project him to add even more velocity as he develops.

Over the past two seasons, he's compiled a 12-4 record with a 1.64 ERA and 157 strikeouts in 115 innings.

German's combination of speed and strength makes him a potential impact outfielder if Houston prefers to develop him as an everyday player. Since he didn't play baseball full-time, many scouts believe he hasn't come close to his full potential, and he's a teachable prospect.

"He's very tall, so there's a lot of projection there," Elias said. "He's got the type of young arm you really dream about as a scout, and it's still pretty undeveloped. It was a thrill to get such an athletic guy so late."

German has signed with Nevada, but a pro offer might be tempting. However, he said before the Draft that he expected to go sometime around the fifth round, making his 11th-round selection low for his standards.

Chris Abshire is an associate reporter for
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