Skip to content

It’s Draft Day

Jun 4, 2012, 9:47 AM EDT

Mark Appel

The Rule 4 draft is today.  That’s the fancy way of saying “the regular old draft.” It used to go on until teams got tired of picking, maybe reaching a hundred rounds. Then it was cut to 50. It’s now a crisp 40 rounds. I fully expect you have your team’s 40 picks all mapped out and are, as we speak, painting yourself in team colors and heading to Madison Square Garden for the insanity.

Oh, wait.  This is not the NFL or NBA so the insanity is kept to a minimum.  Indeed, no one in this draft is going to be a household name already, let alone someone who is going to immediately change the fortunes of the team which selects them.  Baseball just doesn’t work like that.  Which is probably good because I don’t think I could stomach some five-hour glitzy prime-time telecast with baseball’s equivalent of Chris Berman and Mel Kiper barking at me.

Overall, draft experts are saying that there isn’t much in the way of extreme impact talent a la Bryce Harper or Stephen Strasburg, so unless you’re a big fan of amateur baseball or religiously read Baseball America, Kevin Goldstein or Keith Law, you probably don’t know a ton of these dudes. Confession: I don’t either. It’s enough to keep up with the majors and high minors. I’m sort of lost when it comes to the draft — there are people whose full time job it is to follow it — so we’re reading the same stuff in that regard.

It’s even more complicated this year, as several new rules besides the round limits are in place:

Under baseball’s new collective bargaining agreement, teams will have a pool of bonus money from which to sign players. The Astros, for example, have about $11.2 million to use as bonuses on their 11 picks through the 10th round. The Twins, who have 13 picks in 10 rounds, have about $12.4 million to use for bonuses. Teams face a punitive tax and the possibility of losing draft picks if they stray from the prescribed bonuses.

All of the teams have been thinking about this since the new CBA was signed, but I imagine it’s still kind of scary for them.  Add in to it the fact that the signing deadline for drafted players has been moved up to mid-July, and there is added pressure.

So, lots of uncertainty. But I do know this much: the Astros pick first and are widely expected to take Stanford right-hander Mark Appel, who (a) happens to throw close to 100 m.p.h.; and (b) is from Houston.  And there is nothing as old and time-tested in the baseball draft as tall, hard-throwing Texas pitchers, so it’s not all unusual.

Latest Posts
  1. No one is sure when Matt Cain will pitch for the Giants again

    Jul 22, 2014, 11:50 AM EDT

    Matt Cain AP

    After letting Matt Cain pitch (poorly) through a “cranky” elbow since spring training the Giants finally shut him down yesterday, placing him on the disabled list with elbow inflammation.

  2. The guy with the curly-W beard is . . . awesome?

    Jul 22, 2014, 11:30 AM EDT

    Nationals cap logo

    That’s some real Nattitude right there.

  3. Dustin Ackley robbed Travis d’Arnaud of a home run

    Jul 22, 2014, 11:19 AM EDT

    Dustin Ackley Reuters

    Last night Mets catcher Travis d’Arnaud hit a home run to left-center field, except Mariners left fielder Dustin Ackley jumped up, reached over the fence, and brought the ball back with a spectacular catch.

  4. Giants broadcaster Mike Krukow has a degenerative muscle disease

    Jul 22, 2014, 11:00 AM EDT

    Krukow and Kuiper

    Non-fatal, but serious enough to where, after eight years, he is going public.

  5. Tommy Milone declines to comment on report he requested a trade from A’s

    Jul 22, 2014, 10:47 AM EDT

    Tommy Milone Getty Getty Images

    Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com reported yesterday that A’s left-hander Tommy Milone has requested a trade after being demoted to Triple-A despite plenty of success in the big leagues.

  6. Blue Jays call up pitching prospect Aaron Sanchez

    Jul 22, 2014, 10:15 AM EDT

    Aaron Sanchez AP AP

    Sanchez’s numbers this season haven’t been particularly impressive, including an underwhelming 4.19 ERA and 27/17 K/BB ratio in 34 innings at Triple-A, but he was a first-round draft pick in 2010 and ranked as a consensus top-50 prospect coming into this season.

  7. Roenis Elias leaves game with arm issues

    Jul 22, 2014, 9:16 AM EDT

    Roenis Elias AP

    He’s not at the top of the M’s rotation, but no contender wants to lose a pitcher.

  8. The Phillies are telling teams Cole Hamels is not available

    Jul 22, 2014, 8:55 AM EDT

    cole hamels getty Getty Images

    A big lefty on the market would bring a nice return. But the Phillies aren’t putting their big lefty on the market.

  9. And That Happened: Monday’s scores and highlights

    Jul 22, 2014, 6:33 AM EDT

    Adam Jones AP

    Adam Jones smacked two homers. So did David Ortiz. Oh, and Lisa needs braces (dental plan), Lisa needs braces (dental plan).

  10. Shin-Soo Choo regrets playing through ankle injury

    Jul 21, 2014, 11:15 PM EDT

    Shin-Soo Choo AP AP

    The Rangers had high hopes when they signed outfielder Shin-Soo Choo to a seven-year, $130 million contract over the winter, but a lingering injury to his left ankle is a major reason why his first season with Texas has been a bust.

  11. Cliff Lee struggles in first start back from disabled list

    Jul 21, 2014, 10:29 PM EDT

    Cliff Lee AP AP

    Plenty of scouts were in attendance tonight for Cliff Lee’s first start in the majors in over two months. They likely didn’t come away impressed.

  12. Jason Vargas could rejoin the Royals’ rotation as soon as Sunday

    Jul 21, 2014, 9:58 PM EDT

    Jason Vargas AP AP

    Royals left-hander Jason Vargas underwent an appendectomy less than two weeks ago, but he could be activated from the disabled list as soon as Sunday against the Indians.

  13. VIDEO: Andrelton Simmons did something ridiculous again

    Jul 21, 2014, 9:15 PM EDT

    Andrelton Simmons

    Andrelton Simmons just isn’t fair.

  14. Josh Beckett will return from disabled list to start Tuesday

    Jul 21, 2014, 8:48 PM EDT

    Josh Beckett Getty Getty Images

    Dodgers right-hander Josh Beckett is dealing with a left hip impingement, but he made it through a bullpen session Saturday with no issues and has been cleared to return Tuesday.

  15. Dodgers get good news on Hanley Ramirez and Yasiel Puig

    Jul 21, 2014, 8:01 PM EDT

    dodgers logo

    X-rays on the hands of Hanley Ramirez and Yasiel Puig came back negative.

  16. Angels sign John Buck to minor league contract

    Jul 21, 2014, 7:09 PM EDT

    John Buck Getty Getty Images

    Veteran catcher John Buck was given his release by the Mariners earlier this month, but he didn’t stay out of a job for long.

  17. Report: Tommy Milone has asked the Athletics to trade him

    Jul 21, 2014, 6:24 PM EDT

    Tommy Milone Getty Getty Images

    After a demotion to Triple-A earlier this month, Tommy Milone has asked the Athletics to trade him. He appears unlikely to get his wish.

Featured video

Colby-on-Colby crime in Toronto
Top 10 MLB Player Searches
  1. H. Street (3481)
  2. C. Lee (2671)
  3. H. Ramirez (2347)
  4. M. Trout (2307)
  5. Y. Puig (2054)
  1. D. Price (2050)
  2. J. Segura (2018)
  3. B. Belt (2018)
  4. T. Tulowitzki (1993)
  5. J. Papelbon (1971)