Results tagged ‘ Draft ’

The new CBA — what the top 10 picks are worth

I’m getting more and more details about how the new CBA will work in terms of the Draft and international signings and I promise to share them all with you as the picture becomes more clear. Some of that will come in the form of stories and I’ll use the B3 space for tidbits here and there. And believe me, there’s a lot. Truthfully, no one knows just yet how this will impact anything with the Draft and might not until everyone goes through it a time or two. Yes, there will be some bumps, especially with the market correction in the first year, but I think it too soon to presume certain teams will be ruined/destroyed/greatly hampered by this new system.

Anyway, one bit of info I wanted to pass along now.  Those of you following this saga know that the way it will be set up will be with each team having  a certain “Signing Bonus Pool” — an amount of money a team is allowed to spend in the Draft without being charged a tax or the forfeiture of draft pick(s). Teams picking at the top of the Draft will have a larger pool. In 2012, the Astros will have the largest pool at $11.5 million. That figure comes from adding up the values of every pick they will have, as of now, in rounds 1-10.

I have been able to obtain the values assigned to the top 10 picks in the Draft. It doesn’t give the complete picture — I hope to get more information soon — but you can see how MLB valued the top of the Draft:

1 — $7.2 million
2 — $6.2 million
3 — $5.2 million
4 — $4.2
5 — $3.5
6 — $3.25
7 — $3
8 — $2.9
9 — $2.8
10 — $2.7

This doesn’t mean a team picking No. 4, for example, can’t go over $4.2 million to sign that pick, but it all goes toward that aggregate pool.  As a comparison, take a look at what the Nos. 1-10 picks got in 2011. Keep in mind, some of these were Major League deals, which are no longer allowed. But in any deal — even a two-sport contract spread over five years — would be included in total against that year’s pool.

1 — Gerrit Cole: $8 million
2 — Danny Hultzen: $6.35
3 — Trevor Bauer: $3.4
4 — Dylan Bundy: $4
5 — Bubba Starling: $7.5
6 — Anthony Rendon: $6
7 — Archie Bradley: $5
8 — Francisco Lindor: $2.9
9 — Javier Baez: $2.65
10 — Cory Spangenberg: $1.863

Not too far off, right, with an exception or two. And the Diamondbacks giving Bradley $5 million is more than the $3 million value for the No. 7 pick now, but they saved in the aggregate with Trevor Bauer’s deal. In the new system, those two picks are valued at $8.2 million. Bauer and Bradley got $8.4 million.

This is far from a complete picture, obviously, and I hope to paint that as time goes on and more details become known. But it’s a little bit of a look at the fact that perhaps this isn’t as doomsday-ish as some early reactions made it out to be.

Much, much more to come.

The new CBA and amateur players

I’m still sorting through all the details, as best as I can, on the new CBA and how it impacts the amateur scene. Needless to say, this changes the Draft and the international signing landscape tremendously. There will be a more concrete story coming in a bit, but the first reaction is that teams like the Pirates and Royals, smaller-revenue teams who have used their resources to be aggressive in the Draft (and in international signings to an extent) are going to be handcuffed by this. But that’s just a gut reaction. Much more to come.

For now, though, I’m posting the parts of the CBA that pertain to the amateur scene here, broken out from the entire agreement:

a. Free Agency
1. All eligible Players will become free agents as of the end of the World Series, with no
election required, and the “quiet period” will be five days.
2. The tender date will be December 2 beginning in 2012.
3. Article XX(B) free agents signing minor league contracts who are not added to the
Opening Day roster or unconditionally released 5 days prior to Opening Day shall receive
an additional $100,000 retention bonus and the right to opt out on June 1.
b. Draft Pick Compensation
1. Starting in 2012, “Type A” and “Type B” free agents and the use of the Elias ranking
system will be eliminated.
2. The current system of draft pick compensation will be replaced with the following
A. Only Players who have been with their Clubs for the entire season will be subject
to compensation.
B. A free agent will be subject to compensation if his former Club offers him a
guaranteed one-year contract with a salary equal to the average salary of the
125-highest paid Players from the prior season. The offer must be made at the
end of the five-day free agent “quiet period,” and the Player will have seven days
to accept the offer.
C. A Club that signs a player subject to compensation will forfeit its first round
selection, unless it selects in the top 10, in which case it will forfeit its secondhighest
selection in the draft.
D. The Player’s former Club will receive a selection at the end of the first round
beginning after the last regularly scheduled selection in the round. The former
Clubs will select based on reverse order of winning percentage from the prior
championship season.
c. Salary Arbitration Eligibility
1. The percentage of players with two years of service who will be arbitration eligible will
be increased from the top 17% to the top 22% in terms of service.
2. All players tied at the 22% cutoff will be eligible for arbitration.
d. Minimum Salaries
1. Major League will increase from $414,000 in 2011 to: $480,000 in 2012; $490,000 in
2013; and $500,000 in 2014; COLA in 2015 and 2016.
2. Minor League will increase from $67,300 in 2011 to: $78,250 in 2012; $79,900 in 2013;
and $81,500 in 2014; COLA in 2015 and 2016.
e. Rule 4 Draft
1. The draft will continue to be conducted in June, but the signing deadline will be moved
to a date between July 12 and July 18 depending on the date of the All-Star Game.
2. Drafted players may only sign Minor League contracts.
3. Signing Bonus Pools
A. Each Club will be assigned an aggregate Signing Bonus Pool prior to each draft.
For the purpose of calculating the Signing Bonus Pools, each pick in the first 10
rounds of the draft has been assigned a value. (These values will grow each year
with the rate of growth of industry revenue.) A Club’s Signing Bonus Pool equals
the sum of the values of that Club’s selections in the first 10 rounds of the draft.
Players selected after the 10th round do not count against a Club’s Signing
Bonus Pool if they receive bonuses up to $100,000. Any amounts paid in excess
of $100,000 will count against the Pool.
B. Clubs that exceed their Signing Bonus Pools will be subject to penalties as
Excess of Pool Penalty (Tax on Overage/Draft Picks)
• 0-5% 75% tax on overage
• 5-10% 75% tax on overage and loss of 1st round pick
• 10-15% 100% tax on overage and loss of 1st and 2nd round picks
• 15%+ 100% tax on overage and loss of 1st round picks in next two drafts
4. Proceeds generated by the tax will be distributed to payee Clubs under the Revenue Sharing
Plan that do not exceed their Signing Bonus Pools. Draft picks that are forfeited by Clubs will
be awarded to other Clubs through a lottery in which a Club’s odds of winning will be based
on its prior season’s winning percentage and its prior season’s revenue. Only Clubs that do
not exceed their Signing Bonus Pools are eligible for the lottery.
5. Competitive Balance Lottery
A. For the first time, Clubs with the lowest revenues and in the smallest markets will
have an opportunity to obtain additional draft picks through a lottery.
B. The ten Clubs with the lowest revenues, and the ten Clubs in the smallest
markets, will be entered into a lottery for the six draft selections immediately
following the completion of the first round of the draft. A Club’s odds of winning
the lottery will be based on its prior season’s winning percentage.
C. The eligible Clubs that did not receive one of the six selections after the first
round, and all other payee Clubs under the Revenue Sharing Plan, will be
entered into a second lottery for the six picks immediately following the
completion of the second round of the draft. A Club’s odds of winning the
lottery will be based on its prior season’s winning percentage.
D. Picks awarded in the Competitive Balance Lottery may be assigned by a Club,
subject to certain restrictions.
E. Top 200 prospects will be subject to a pre-draft drug test and will participate in a
pre-draft medical program.
f. International Talent Acquisition
1. By December 15, 2011, the parties will form an International Talent Committee to
discuss the development and acquisition of international players, including the potential
inclusion of international amateur players in a draft or in multiple drafts.
2. For the 2012-13 signing season, each Club will be allocated an equal Signing Bonus
3. For each signing period after 2012-13, Clubs will be allocated different Signing Bonus
Pools, based on reverse order of winning percentage the prior championship season
(i.e., the Club with the lowest winning percentage the prior season shall receive the
largest Pool).
4. Bonus Regulation of International Amateur Players
A. Beginning in the 2013-2014 signing period (July 2, 2013 – June 15, 2014), Clubs
may trade a portion of their Signing Bonus Pool, subject to certain restrictions.
B. Clubs that exceed their Signing Bonus Pools will be subject to the following
penalties in the 2012-2013 and 2013-2014 signing periods:
Excess of Pool Penalty (Tax on Overage/Draft Picks)
• 0-5% 75% tax
• 5-10% 75% tax and loss of right to provide more than one player in the next signing period with a bonus in
excess of $500,000.
• 10-15% 100% tax and loss of right to provide any player in the next signing period with a bonus in excess of
• 15%+ 100% tax and loss of right to provide any player in the next signing period with a bonus in excess of
C. The penalties for exceeding the Signing Bonus Pool will increase beginning with
the 2014-2015 signing period if a draft or drafts is not agreed to by July 2014.
5. All international amateur players must register with the Scouting Bureau to be eligible to
sign, and the top 100 prospects will be subject to a drug test.
6. The Office of the Commissioner and the Union will form a joint committee to assist
international players with their transition to educational/vocational programs after their
baseball careers are over.


No-nos abound for Draft prospects

On the one hand, you expect these top high school Draft prospects to dominate their opponents. On the other, a no-hitter is still a no-hitter, right?

In this week’s batch of Draft Reports (along with a feature on North Carolina’s Matt Harvey) is a report on California righty Taijuan Walker. Interesting thing about the report is that it wasn’t a glowing one. Not that Walker doesn’t have talent, mind you. But he’s been maddeningly inconsistent, both start-to-start and between starts. But I talked to a scout who saw him today who reported that Walker threw a no-hitter against Eisenhower High School. His velocity was right around 90-93 the entire start, it didn’t vary, and he maintained it throughout the start. His slider, which did not look good in earlier viewings, looked a lot sharper (it still needs some work, but it was vastly improved). Now, if Walker can keep that up in his following starts, he’ll continue to move up Draft boards.

aviles.jpgOne no-hitter is nice. But how about two, back-to-back? And what if one of them was a perfect game? That’s what Suffern HS RHP Robbie Aviles has done in his last two starts. Last week, he threw a perfect game.Then yesterday came the no-hitter. According to the story on, Aviles didn’t even realize he had the no-no because he started the game with two walks and walked four total. He struck out 15 and hasn’t allowed a run this season (spanning 20 innings). The Northeast guys always get a later start because of the weather and when there’s a guy making things happen like this, he’ll become a hot commodity in a hurry. The report said there were 30 scouts in attendance yesterday and it sounds like there were more than just area guys there. He starts again on Wednesday, so let’s see if he can make it three in a row.

Just some Draft tidbits for you while you’re waiting to see if the rain stops in Oxford, Mississippi for the big Anthony Ranaudo vs. Drew Poermanz matchup.

East Coast Showcase

While there are less than two weeks until the 2009 Draft signing deadline — and there are 20 unsigned first-rounders — serious work is already being done for the 2010 Draft. The summer showcase circuit is in full swing and the 2009 East Coast Showcase
was one of the first — and biggest. Held from Aug. 1-4, rest assured
there were several players at this event for high schoolers who’ll be
high draft picks next June.

Don’t believe me? How about these alumni from the 2008 East Coast
Showcase who were taken in this year’s Draft, with draft spot in

Zack Wheeler, RHP (No. 6 overall, Giants)
Bobby Borchering, 3B (No. 16 overall, Diamondbacks)
Mike Trout, OF (No. 25 overall, Angels)
LeVon Washington, 2B (No. 30, Rays)

And that’s just the first rounders; there were also two second-rounders
and three third- rounders who attended last year’s event. So knowing
who stood out at the recently completed ’09 version is a good head
start to knowing who the top prep picks will be next June.

I spoke with some scouts who were in attendance and here’s who they felt stood out in Lakeland, Fla.:

Stetson Allie, RHP/3B: One scout called him a freak. He’s been
around the showcase circuit for a while and is strong, physical young
man who can throw hard on the mound and hit the ball far from the
plate. On the mound, he’s touched 100 mph and threw 92-97 mph in the
Showcase. He’s got a slider he throws in the 88-91 mph range. He’s got
below-average command and some would rather let him hit first. He’s got
big, legit raw power.

Eric Arce, C/1B, Lakeland HS:
The best hitter at the event, a
left-handed bat who was the most mature hitter there. He’s got a loose,
easy stroke and a professional approach at the plate. He’s got good raw
power and uses the entire field. He had lit it up at East Cobb and
has kept going. His arm is fringe average behind plate and can  play a
decent first base. Right now, he’s a bat without a position.

Cam Bedrosian, RHP, East Coweta HS, Ga.:  He looks a lot like
his dad, former big leaguer Steve. And he’s got the same aggressive
demeanor on the mound. He fills the strike zone with 92-95 mph
fastballs and a nice short breaking ball, thrown 77-79 mph.

Yordy Cabrera, SS, Lakeland HS:  He’s physically impressive and
looks like a big-leaguer now. He’s got potential for all five tools. A
plus arm with a chance to stay at shortstop. Lots of strength with the
bat to work with. He’s got good bat speed and makes hard contact. He’s
got good actions, footwork at shortstop and runs well for his size.

Chevez Clarke, OF/INF, Marietta HS, Ga.:  As toolsy as they
come, all the physical tools to be a star. He plays a very easy center
field with a good arm and above-average speed. He didn’t hit well in
the Showcase, but when he’s on, he’s exciting to watch with a very high

AJ Cole, RHP, Oviedo HS, Fla.:  He’s got a power arm with average to plus breaking ball, up to 96.
Easy, no effort. A little Porcello like in body type. Clue up there,

Delino DeShields, INF/OF, Woodward HS, Ga.: Another exciting
toolsy player, much like his dad was in the big leagues. He’s kind of a
more physical and right-handed hitting version of Juan Pierre. He plays
center when he plays the outfield and that might be the best place for
him. He ran a 6.48 in the 60, to give you an idea of his speed.

Manny Machado, SS, Miami Brito HS:  He may have played himself
into being a top first rounder at this showcase. He’s silky smooth and
does everything easy. He’s got a plus arm at short with good hands and
actions. He’s got a smooth, easy stroke at the plate and the ball just
jumps off his bat. He’s an average runner, but is better underway.

DeAndre Smelter, RHP, Tatnall HS, Ga.:  He throws 92-95 mph with a quick arm. He’s got a good breaking ball (75-77 mph). Another power arm, kind of like a
more physical Edwin Jackson at this age. The ball jumps out of his hand and is very heavy when it crosses the plate.

Karsten Whitson, RHP, Chipley HS, Fla:  He wasn’t at his best at
the Showcase, where he was up to 92 mph, but he’s been seen as high as
96 mph. The ball jumps out of his hand and he’s got a good hard
curve/slider that he throws 78-81 mph. He’s big and projectable and
repeats his delivery well, allowing him to throw strikes and keep the
ball down in the zone.

Bobby Wahl, RHP, West Springfield HS., Va.:
  He’s got a little more
pitchability than the other arms on this list, but that doesn’t mean he
doesn’ thave stuff. He was still up to 92-93 mph and with a projectable
frame, there might be more in the tank. He’s got a good breaking ball
and mixes his pitches well, throwing everything for strikes.

There you have it. Store these names in the back of your head for next
June. It will be interesting to see who continues to excel during the
next season.




Thursday tidbits

I know I owe you some more Minor-League related stuff on here, but I have to admit, I’m starting to be more draft-focused these days so that’s where my mind is.

That being said, if you want a fix of me talking about prospects, be sure to tune in to the MLB Network at 6:30 p.m. ET on the MLB Tonight: On-Deck Circle show. Should be a fun time for all.

Draft-wise, the new Draft Report is now up. We’re now up over 60 reports and it’s not even May yet. Color me pleased.

Some good college matchups this weekend:

Georgia at Mississippi (Rich Poythress and Jordan Henry swing the bat)
Okahoma St at Texas A&M (Andrew Oliver vs. Brooks Raley on Friday in a battle of lefties?)
TCU at San Diego St. (Just Strasburg’s next start, who wants to miss that???)

That’s it for now…

Waiting out the rain

Back at PNC Park tonight — I’ve got Marlins duty the next three days. I hear they’re off to a good start. Of course, I’ll only have something to cover if it ever stops raining here. I’m not too confident, but we’ll see.

It does give me some time to hop back on here, though. First, congrats to jfish — I was indeed talking about ASU’s Mike Leake. He had another strong start on Friday. It’ll be interesting to see when he goes and who will look past his size to take the arm.

As for jfish’s questions about Ackley, I haven’t seen him enough or asked about his ability to play second. But arm strength isn’t really a problem. His arm is just fine and will continue to get better as he gets further removed from Tommy John. There isn’t concern about it long-term. It’s just that his speed would play better in center and his bat doesn’t profile as well to first, at least not in terms of power.

Couple of Minors notes… Our first Minor League Week in Review is up. Good stuff by Lisa Winston, so check it out. Fantasy fans can also peruse our second in tandem Futures Exchange , where we were all about the long ball.

OK, game under-way here, believe it or not. I hope to be back soon.

A little draft talk

That’s right, folks. Two posts in the span of three days. Crazy stuff, I tells ya.

I wanted to hop on as I sit in the PNC Park pressbox watching a thrilling Astros-Pirates game to chat with eveyrone on a number of issues.

Let’s talk draft, shall we? Take a look at these two season pitching lines from the college ranks:

Player A: 7-0, 54 1/3 IP, 34 H, 9 ER, 11 BB, 107 K, .177 BAA, 1.49 ERA
Player B: 8-1, 64 1/3 IP, 37 H, 11 ER, 14 BB, 74 K, .170 BAA, 1.53 ERA

You’ll recognize the line for Player A if you’ve been reading my Draft Reports. That’s consensus top talent Stephen Strasburg. But any guesses who Player B is? Send me who you think it is in comments and I’ll reveal the answer tomorrow.

A whlie back, I got a question on here that was draft-related (Jfish, hope you’re reading). The question was about Dustin Ackley of UNC and a little on Robert Stock at USC. Let’s start with Ackley. The question was about what people were saying about his draft value considering the lack of time he’s spent in the outfield. There is no question the guy can hit and he’s one of the more advanced bats in this draft class. The fact that it’s not a great year for hitters will help him without question. He does profile much better as a center fielder because he doesn’t have the kind of power you’d like to see for a first baseman. He’s also got good speed and would be a pretty good outfielder. He’s played out there some. Whether or not it’ll be enough for people to get a good enough read of his skills out there remains to be seen. But keep in mind guys have been drafted highly and moved to another position without ever having played there before (see LaPorta, Matt). At least Ackley has played the outfield before. Will he be a top 5 pick, as was asked? I think it’s possible. He’s not a true impact kind of bat, like say, Pedro Alvarez or Buster Posey, but he’s a pretty safe bet big-league hitter.

As for Stock, I honestly haven’t heard much of anything about him. For a guy who was so highly touted in high school, he does seem to have moved backward. I’m sure someone will take him, but I don’t see him as a top round guy at this point.

What the…?

Every day goes by with me saying, “Today I’m going to blog again.” And then the day ends and it doesn’t happen. Suddenly, it’s April 14 and I realize I haven’t posted a thing in two weeks, making me scratch my head, look at the calendar and say, “What the…?”

Feel free to choose from any of the below excuses:

  1. I’m a lazy sloth.
  2. Passover hit and I didn’t want to have an unleavened post.
  3. I’ve been so busy I don’t know which end is up.
  4. It’s the Bush Administration’s fault.

Personally, I like No. 4 because I’ve grown accustomed to blaming them for everything, but that’s my own personal viewpoint…

At any rate, so much is going on, I don’t even know where to begin. I’m so glad the Minor League season is underway. In the future here, I’m going to try and pick regular B3 Players of the Week, or Stars of Stars or something “here are some real good players”-esque. But I’ll wait for there to be more games in before getting that thing going.

I also know I owe some people some answers to some questions. I know I’ve said this before, but I’m going to try to get to that soon. Maybe after I file my taxes (Buying a Stubby Clapp bobblehead off of ebay is deductible, isn’t it?).

For now, I’ll let you know what’s been going on. The Draft Reports have continued weekly. We’re up to 47 reports and counting. So take a look and let me know what you think.

We also have the Futures Exchange up and running and it’s got a slightly new look. Colleague and Got Milb? author Lisa Winston and I are teaming up to give you the best fantasy-related prospect talk you can find. We figured two heads were better than one, right?

OK, great to be back in the saddle here. Here’s hoping I can keep this thing going now that the Minor League season is underway. I’ll leave you with a question to ponder and leave comments about:

Whose early-season performance in the Minors has been the most impressive?


Draft Aft: An Update

I know, don’t be too shocked. But I had a few moments of down time while covering the Reds to throw up some draft tidbits. It’s not much, but hopefully it’ll keep you going until the next random time I can hop on here and talk draft.

First off, my latest Draft Report is up and ready for your perusal. Be sure to go to the landing page if you’ve missed any of the previous ones. We’ve got 32 in total to date, not too shabby considering it’s still March.

A couple of bits of information I’ve gathered along the way lately…

  • USC shortstop Grant Green, who I’ll have a report on next week, came out of a game earlier this week with an ankle injury. He was seen wearing a boot afterwards, which had some concerned. But from everything I’ve heard, it was just a precaution. He didn’t play in Wednesday’s doubleheader against Brown — which USC swept — but it seemed probable that he’d be in the lineup this weekend against ASU.
  • Scott Griggs, a high school right-hander in Northern California who was an AFLAC All-American last summer, has been dealing with a blister problem. That’s nothing serious, obviously, but it’s kept him from throwing enough for scouts to get a really good read on how he looks this spring.
  • Speaking of USC-ASU… how about this for a Friday night matchup: ASU’s Mike Leake vs. USC’s Brad Boxberger. That’s about as good a matchup as you can hope for at this point of the season.
  • Stephen Strasburg, the consensus top talent in the draft, will pitch against a tough TCU team. The game’s in Fort Worth and it should be his toughest test to date, as he’s been putting up video game numbers so far this season.

Well, that felt good to get a little info out there. I can’t promse I’ll be able to do much of this draft stuff until my Spring Training duties are over, but know it’s not from lack of effort.

B3 and Geeking announce merger

PITTSBURGH — In a move sure to shock the baseball world, two extremely influential blogs — at least according to their author — have announced they will merge into one super-blog.

From this point forward, B3: Big, Bald and Beautiful will be THE place to come for coverage of the Minor Leagues AND the draft. Geeking on the Draft will cease operations immediately, making it easier for fans to have one-stop shopping for the future stars of the game.

“It took some intense negotiations, and it got ugly at times, but we got a deal done,” a relieved B3 operator Jonathan Mayo said. “We hope this merger makes B3 the biggest MLBlog out there and at the very least lets people have to come to only one place for the best inside info on the Minor Leagues and the draft.”

There were few immediate changes to announce, other than a change in B3’s subhead to include its new dual focus. As the season approaches — the draft season, in many ways, kicks off in earnest in early February with a high school showcase at the Urban Youth Academy — B3 will post frequently on both subjects. While having separate blogs for each subject seemed ideal in the past, the recent economic downturn made the merger a necessity. While Geeking owner Jonathan Mayo was reluctant to give up creative control of the draft blog, he didn’t see any other choice.

“I really don’t like that Mayo character, but what can you do?” said Mayo, who will still be a consultant on B3. “I’ll just have to hold my nose and do what I can to ensure he doesn’t mess up the draft coverage on the new blog. I’m trying to see the silver lining. By combining forces, we should be able to move up the MLBlogs Top 100 list.”

In 2008, B3 finished No. 24 on the MLB Pro Blogs Top 100, while Geeking came in at No. 26.

%d bloggers like this: