Major League Baseball will kick off its amateur draft on Thursday, June 6. MLB Network and MLB.com will cover the draft live starting at 7:00 p.m. EDT. The pick-by-pick coverage will include the First Round, Competitive Balance Round A, Second Round, and Competitive Balance Round B — 73 picks in total. The remainder of the draft will take place on June 7 and 8.
We will get you ready for the amateur draft — also known as the Rule-4 draft — with two posts. Today in Part 1, we’ll provide a refresher on the new rules put in place in the most recent MLB-MLBPA collective bargaining agreement. We’ll then show how those rules were applied in coming up with this year’s draft selection order.
In Part 2, we’ll explain the bonus slots for each selection, the total bonus pools for each team, and look back at bit at how spending has changed in the last five years.
The Rule-4 draft applies to players from the United States, Canada, Puerto Rico, and any other U.S. territory. To be eligible for the draft, players from these countries and territories must have either completed high school but not yet attended college; attended at least three years of college or be at least 21 years old; or attended junior or community college for any length of time. Players from any other countries must register with MLB, but are not subject to a draft. That may change soon, as MLB tries to institute an international draft.
The New Rules
The new CBA did away with Elias Sports Bureau’s ranking of free agents as either Type-A and Type-B players. Under the old rules, a team that signed a Type A player gave its first round and supplemental round draft picks to the club that the player left. A team that signed a Type B free agent didn’t lose any picks, but the team that lost that player received a supplemental pick. Type A free agents were in the top 20% for their position; Type B free agents were in the 21-40% range of the position. Elias’ ranking methodology was not made public. There were special rules in place during the 2012 draft to bridge from the Type A/Type B free-agent compensation rules from the old CBA to the new compensation system under the new one.
The new CBA replaced Type-A and Type-B rankings with “qualifying offers.” Instead of Elias determining a free agent’s value, the team he’s leaving makes that decision when it either does or doesn’t a qualifying offer to a player who is eligible for free agency. A value of a qualifying offer is the average salary of the top 125 players in the prior season. In the 2012-2013 off-season, a qualify offer was worth $13.3 million. Teams have until five days after the World Series to make a qualifying offer. Players must accept or reject the offer within seven days of receiving it.
A team that signs a free agent who rejected a qualifying offer loses its first round draft pick. The pick doesn’t go to the team that lost the free agent. Instead, the free agent’s former team receives a compensation pick at the end of the first round, with these choices coming in reverse order of the 2012 major league standings. Teams with the ten worst records the prior season do not lose their first-round picks (which are protected), bu they lose their second-round pick. The teams with protected first round picks for 2013 are the Astros, Cubs, Rockies, Twins, Indians, Marlins, Red Sox, Royals, Blue Jays. The Pirates’ ninth pick in the first round was also protected because their first round selection in the 2012 draft (Mark Appel) didn’t sign with the team.
Teams made qualifying offers to nine players at the end of the 2012 season: David Ortiz, Kyle Lohse, Michael Bourn, Josh Hamilton, Nick Swisher, B.J. Upton, Adam LaRoche, Hiroki Kuroda, and Rafael Soriano. None accepted the offers. Ortiz, LaRoche, and Kuroda signed with their former teams, which negated any effect of the qualifying offer. The following teams lost first round picks when they signed the remaining six: Brewers (Lohse), Angels (Hamilton), Braves (Upton), Nationals (Soriano), and Indians (Bourn, Swisher) (Indians lost a first and second round pick). The Cardinals (Lohse), Rangers (Hamilton), Rays (Upton), Braves (Bourn), and Yankees (Soriano, Swisher) received compensation picks at the end of the first round.
The new CBA also ushered in the era of competitive-balance draft picks. The ten smallest-market teams and the ten lowest-revenue teams were entered in a lottery held last July. Six winners of that lottery received competitive balance picks to be used after the completion of the first round. As MLB.com’s Jonathan Mayo explained:
Those half-dozen picks will be made at the conclusion of the first round, following the compensation selections. Because there is obvious crossover between those two groups, there are 13 teams entered into the first-round lottery: the D-backs, Orioles, Indians, Royals, A’s, Pirates, Padres, Rays, Reds, Rockies, Marlins, Brewers and Cardinals. The odds of winning a Draft pick will be based on each team’s winning percentage in the previous season.
There will be a second group of six picks, to be made after the conclusion of the second round. The teams from the first group that did not get one of the early picks will be re-entered, along with any other Major League team that receives revenue sharing. This year, only one team — the Tigers — will be added to the second lottery.
The lottery winners were, in order:
Competitive Balance Round A
Competitive Balance Round B
Competitive-balance picks can be traded. First-round draft picks cannot.
The 2013 Draft Selection Order
To figure out the draft selection order, we start a list of all 30 teams in reverse-order of winning percentage in the prior season. We remove any first or second round picks that were forfeited by teams that signed free agents who received qualifying offers. We then add in the compensatory picks at the end of the first round. Finally, we wedge the competitive balance picks between first round and the second round, and between the second round and the third round, and make any adjustments for trades of competitive balance picks.
For the first three rounds of the 2013 draft, we get:
|1st Round||Competitive Balance Round A||2nd Round||Competitive Balance Round B||3rd Round||Supplemental Round|
|1. Astros||34. Royals||40. Astros||69. Padres||74. Astros||106. Athletics|
|2. Cubs||35. Marlins||41. Cubs||70. Rockies||75. Cubs|
|3. Rockies||36. D’Backs||42. Rockies||71. Athletics||76. Mets|
|4. Twins||37. Orioles||43. Twins||72. Brewers||77. Rockies|
|5. Indians||38. Reds||44. Marlins||73. Marlins||78. Twins|
|6. Marlins||39. Tigers||45. Red Sox||79. Indians|
|7. Red Sox||46. Royals||80. Marlins|
|8. Royals||47. Blue Jays||81. Red Sox|
|9. Pirates||48. Mets||82. Royals|
|10. Blue Jays||49. Mariners||83. Blue Jays|
|11. Mets||50. Padres||84. Mets|
|12. Mariners||51. Pirates||85. Mariners|
|13. Padres||52. D’Backs||86. Padres|
|14. Pirates||53. Phillies||87. Pirates|
|15. D’Backs||54. Brewers||88. D’Backs|
|16. Phillies||55. White Sox||89. Phillies|
|17. White Sox||56. Dodgers||90. Brewers|
|18. Dodgers||57. Cardinals||91. White Sox|
|19. Cardinals||58. Tigers||92. Dodgers|
|20. Tigers||59. Angels||93. Cardinals|
|21. Rays||60. Rays||94. Tigers|
|22. Orioles||61. Orioles||95. Angels|
|23. Rangers||62. Rangers||96. Phillies|
|24. Athletics||63. Athletics||97. Rays|
|25. Giants||64. Giants||98. Orioles|
|26. Yankees||65. Braves||99. Rangers|
|27. Reds||66. Yankees||100. Athletics|
|28. Cardinals||67. Reds||101. Giants|
|29. Rays||68. Nationals||102. Braves|
|30. Rangers||103. Yankees|
|31. Braves||104. Reds|
|32. Yankees||105. Nationals|
In Part 2, we’ll discuss the most controversial aspect of the new draft rules: the limits placed on how much each team can spend to sign each draft pick and how much each team can spend on all draft picks combined.