WASHINGTON -- A last-minute problem has surfaced between the Nationals and right-hander A.J. Cole, which means the two parties may not be doing a deal, according to a baseball source. It's not known what the problem is.
Early Sunday morning, it was reported by Baseball America -- then confirmed by MLB.com -- that Cole, the fourth-round pick in the 2010 First-Year Player Draft, and the Nationals agreed to terms on a $2 million deal.
Another source went so far as to say that Cole and his family feel that the Nationals are a "great fit" for the 18-year-old. Cole likes the positive direction the team is going in.
Team president Stan Kasten, general manager Mike Rizzo and Cole's advisor, Jeff Berry, were not available for comment. Without naming names, Rizzo said on Saturday that the club hopes to get deals done with its unsigned Draft picks, which include outfielder Bryce Harper, the first overall selection by Monday's midnight ET deadline.
"I feel confident that we want to sign the guys we want to sign out of the Draft," Rizzo said. "It's a two-way street, and we are certainly doing our part. We are engaged in good dialogue and good communication."
Cole comes from Oviedo (Fla.) High School, and his fastball is clocked as high as 94 mph.
Bill Ladson is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog, All Nats All the time. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.