Last year’s top overall draft choice, young lefty Brady Aiken, has officially enrolled at IMG Academy, the institution announced. He joins fellow unsigned Astros selection Jacob Nix in heading to the Florida academy. Fangraphs’ Kiley McDaniel first tweeted that he’d heard rumors Aiken would enroll there about a month ago.
By choosing the post-high school athletic training facility and prep school, Aiken will be eligible to re-enter the draft next year. He is expected to remain one of the most sought-after players available, though Houston’s pair of top-five draft choices will presumably represent slots that he will not land.
Aiken and Nix were part of a complex, still-somewhat unclear series of events that unfolded as last year’s amateur draft signing deadline approached. (See here and here for background.) The former had reached agreement on a significant bonus with Houston, but the team reportedly sought to re-negotiate the deal after an MRI showed that he had an abnormally small ulnar collateral ligament. As part of the fallout, a pre-existing agreement with Nix was not consummated, leading to a grievance and eventual settlement.