MLB: Mark Appel recalled by the Phillies, 9 years after being the very 1st choice of the draft
SAN DIEGO — The wait has been nearly endless for Mark Appel, but now MLB’s first-ever pick in the 2013 draft has earned his first major league call-up.
Appel will join the Philadelphia Phillies, who are visiting Petco Park, home of the San Diego Padres, more than nine years after he was named the Houston Astros.
He was recalled from the Lehigh Valley team, which plays in the AAA ranks, when right-hander Connor Brogdon had his name placed on the COVID-19 list.
Prior to his recall, Appel was one of only three players in Major League Baseball history to not have a single game behind the tie despite being a top-3 pick in his draft year.
Brien Taylor (New York Yankees, 1991) and Steven Chilcott (New York Mets, 1966) were the others.
“It has already eaten away at me from the inside for years, Appel told in March 2021. But I made peace with who I am, and what happened in my life, in my career as a baseball player . I still live a lot of joy despite everything. »
Appel left baseball momentarily in January 2018, after five years of frustration at the Astros and Phillies affiliates. he notably suffered from several injuries, in addition to criticism stemming from the fact that he did not perform up to expectations based on him.
But only a few months later, he decided to return to the game.
Now 30, Appel is 5-0 with a 1.61 ERA in 19 appearances on the mound with Lehigh Valley.
In his first pro baseball campaign in 2014, he posted a miserable 6.91 ERA. Eventually, he was sent to the Phillies in December 2015, notably in return for another gunner, Ken Giles.