The Chicago Cubs selected hometown shortstop Ed Howard in the first round of the Major League Baseball amateur draft
CHICAGO (AP) — The Chicago Cubs selected hometown shortstop Ed Howard in the first round of the Major League Baseball amateur draft on Wednesday night.
The 18-year-old Howard was a prep star at Mount Carmel High School on Chicago's South Side. He also started for the 2014 Jackie Robinson West Little League team that advanced to the finals of the Little League World Series.
The 6-foot-2, 185-pound Howard went No. 16 overall, becoming the first Illinois high school position player to go in the first round since Jayson Werth in 1997. Howard has committed to the University of Oklahoma.
Howard hit .421 (48 for 114) with three homers in 35 games during his junior year with Mount Carmel. His senior season was canceled because of the coronavirus pandemic.
The selection of Howard, one of the top black prospects in the draft, comes after the Cubs announced Monday they are working on the formation of a diversity committee to help improve the organization’s standards and practices.
President of Baseball Operations Theo Epstein also said he has been examining his own hiring practices recently amid protests across the country — and the world — over racial injustice.
“The majority of people that I’ve hired, if I’m being honest, have similar backgrounds as me and look a lot like me,” Epstein said. “That’s something that I need to ask myself why. I need to question my own assumptions, my own attitudes. I need to find a way to be better.”
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