With the draft upcoming beginning on June 4th, and the many changes facing the scouting department of every MLB organization, it seems time to throw around what has changed and what effect it could have on the Phillies. The Phils are without a first round pick this year because of the signing of Jonathan Papelbon, however sit with both the 40th and the 54th pick in the Supplemental Round (broadcast live on June 4 by MLB Network). The first notable change is the fact that the length of the draft has changed from 50 rounds in prior years, to 40 rounds this year. Rounds 2-40 will be streamed live on MLB.com.
Secondly, the signing deadline has been moved up from Mid August to Mid July. Specifically this year, the signing deadline is July 13th at 5pm which will lead to more action quickly, and the possibility of seeing more than a few players signed in June in the lower level leagues this season. Next, as opposed to the informal slotting system under the old CBA, the new CBA assigns a bonus pool dollar figure to each of a teams draft picks in the first 10 rounds. If a team fails to sign a player in rounds 1-10, that value is removed from the dollar pool.
The big league contracts that a slew of signees received over the past several years have now been forbidden, pursuant to the new CBA. As opposed to getting a dirty look from Bud Selig as the penalty for going “over slot” in the old CBA, there is now a defined structure to penalize those that go outside the box. Perhaps more importantly then the financial penalty, is the potential loss of draft picks if/when a team goes even as little as 5% over slot. Hypothetically, if a team went 15% or more over the assigned bonus pool, that team would suffer a 100% tax plus the loss of two future first round picks. Any penalties are redistributed to teams that didn’t exceed their bonus pool.
Protecting teams is a new provision that allows for picks in next years draft if a draftee from within the first three rounds does not sign. When that circumstance occurs, teams will receive a pick in the following years draft that is one selection lower than the player that did not sign.
Now…with all that being said, the Phillies have 12 picks in the first 10 rounds of the draft. Their bonus pool for those rounds is a combined $4,916,900. The first pick (#40) is allocated up to $1,291,300. Their second pick (#54) is allocated $940,200. Pick three (#77) goes for $659,800 and their 4th pick (#95) is at the $500,000 figure. It goes on from there. One other note is that bonuses for players signed after the first 10 rounds do not count against their overall budget unless the bonus exceeds $100K.
Look for live draft coverage on Monday evening, the 4th.