Astros top pick Correa expected to sign soon

In this image released by the Puerto Rico Baseball Academy and High School on Tuesday June 5, 2012, student and player Carlos Correa poses for a photo on Sept. 8, 2011. Correa, the 17-year-old slugging shortstop made hometown history on Monday after being selected by the Houston Astros as No. 1 in the Major League Baseball draft, becoming the first No. 1 overall pick from Puerto Rico. (AP Photo/Puerto Rico Baseball Academy and High School)

June 6, 2012 4:47:45 PM PDT
The Houston Astros are closing in on an agreement with top overall draft pick Carlos Correa.

Owner Jim Crane said Wednesday the team has a verbal agreement and expects to sign the Puerto Rican shortstop on Thursday. Later, general manager Jeff Luhnow said while they have agreed to some elements of a contract, "it is by no means a done deal." "I feel confident that we are well on the way, and I'm optimistic that we're going to get something done sooner rather than later," he said, adding it could be in the next 48 hours. Crane also said the team had a verbal agreement in place with Correa when it drafted him Monday night. He said Correa will be in Houston on Thursday and is expected to sign the contract after he passes his physical.

"We've approved the amount, and we hope that he'll sign the agreement and pass the physical tomorrow," Crane said.

But Luhnow also clarified those comments from Crane.

"I did have some discussions with our first pick and his group prior to the selection," Luhnow said. "That's normal, standard practice. It was not an agreement. It was a discussion of general neighborhoods and areas. The purpose of those discussions is just to get a sense of whether or not a deal can be done."

The 17-year-old Correa is the highest draft pick ever from Puerto Rico. He also is the first shortstop to go first overall since Tampa Bay selected Tim Beckham in 2008, and the fourth shortstop taken with the top pick since 1994.

The 6-foot-4, 190-pound Correa is committed to the University of Miami.