By Joseph Phillips, Crusader Sports Writer
After drafting him with the 16th pick in the first round of the 2020 MLB Draft, the Chicago Cubs signed Mt. Carmel High School short stop prospect Ed Howard to his first ever major league baseball contract this weekend.
According to The Bigs Media Network, the group was informed that the Cubs signed Howard to a full slot value of $3.75 million. The group said Howard will likely head to Arizona in August to work with the Cubs new hitting director Justin Stone.
The 18-year-old Howard, who was once an original product out of the Chicago White Sox Ace Academy inner city baseball program, was once a top target of the team. But was passed over with the team’s 11th pick in the 2020 MLB draft. Following the move by the White Sox, the Cubs drafted Howard 16th overall.
“On a flight from California to Chicago at that time, Dan Kantrovitz pored over video of Howard’s at-bats and defensive plays before a planned meeting with the shortstop at Wrigley Field,” said MLB.com sports reporter Jordan Bastian. “When Kantrovitz reached the ballpark and saw Howard (the 2019-20 Gatorade Illinois Baseball Player of the Year) in person, he was taken aback.”
Once drafted by the Cubs, Howard was excited to be selected 16th overall by his hometown team.
“I was looking forward to it. I wanted to be a hometown kid,” Howard said in an interview with MLB.com. “I’m excited it’s with the Cubs. I think that’s a great organization. I watch a lot of Cubs games, follow them, know a lot of their players and things like that, so I’m excited to be a hometown guy. It’s special.”