Cubs agree to terms with 1st-round pick Ed Howard
The Cubs have officially added another top prospect to their farm system.
Chicago native Ed Howard signed a deal with the Cubs this week after the organization selected him 16th overall in the MLB Draft earlier this month.
Howard played his high school ball at Mount Carmel in Chicagoland and was a part of the Jackie Robinson West squad that made it to the Little League championship back in 2014.
Leading into the draft, Howard was ranked as the top shortstop by several outlets and the Cubs had him very high on their board.
“For our draft to start with having the opportunity to select Ed Howard with our first pick was literally our best case scenario and we couldn’t be more thrilled,” said Cubs VP of scouting Dan Kantrovitz a couple hours after the Cubs drafted Howard. “Earlier this week when Jed [Hoyer], Theo [Epstein] and I strategized various scenarios, selecting Ed was literally at the top of our list.
“But frankly, I didn’t think he’d get to our pick. There were a few tenuous moments during the draft where I thought for sure he was gonna get taken. But after the 15th pick went off the board and was announced, I couldn’t wait to tell our local scouts John Pedrotty and Keronn Walker to go call their shortstop and tell him he’s gonna be a Cub.
“We ended up landing our top target.”
Howard is not shying away from the pressure of being a 1st-round selection by his local team.
“I’m excited to be a hometown guy,” Howard said the night of the Draft. “I think it’s special. It’s unique. I’m ready to take on that challenge and have fun and play my game.”
The coronavirus pandemic wiped out Howard’s senior season, but he hit .421 with 11 doubles and 3 homers in 35 games as a junior with Mount Carmel in 2019.
For more from Kantrovitz on Howard and the rest of the haul from his first draft with the Cubs, check out the Cubs Weekly podcast: