You Can't Win If You Don't Play

UPDATE: The MLB Rule 4 Draft Competitive Balance Lottery has been postponed until Wednesday 7-18.


The Rule 4 Competitive Balance and Forfeited Draft Pick lotteries will be held next Monday, and while it does not appear that any MLB club will be forfeiting a 1st round pick as the result of exceeding its Signing Bonus Pool by 5%+ (although it could  still happen), 12 MLB clubs will definitely be awarded Competitive Balance draft picks in next June's Rule 4 Draft (First-Year Player Draft).

At stake in the lottery are six draft picks between the 1st and 2nd rounds and six more between the 2nd and 3rd rounds.

The six Competitive Balance lottery picks between the 1st and 2nd rounds will be slotted immediately after any Article XX-B Compensation picks awarded to teams who lose an MLB Article XX-B free-agent post-2012 after extending a "Qualifying Offer" to the player.

NOTE: A "Qualifying Offer" is a one-year guaranteed contract with a salary at least equal to the average salary of the 125 highest MLB aalaries from the previous season. This is the mechanism negotiated in the new CBA that replaces clubs offering salary arbitration to Type "A" and Type "B" free-agents in order to receive compensatory draft pick(s) should the player sign with snother club. 

The six Competitive Balance lottery picks between the 2nd and 3rd rounds will be slotted immediately after the 30th pick of the 2nd round.

Only MLB clubs that are in the bottom ten smallest-markets and MLB clubs that receive revenue sharing are eligible to participate in the Competitive Balance Lottery, and no team can be awarded more than one Competitive Balance draft pick in a given season. 

Competitive Balance draft picks can be traded beginning next Tuesday (the day after the lottery) up through the last day of the 2012 MLB regular season, and then again beginning on MLB Opening Day 2013 up until next June's Rule 4 Draft. (The draft picks cannot be traded during the off-season).

Also, a Competitive Balance draft pick can be traded only once (by the team to which it was awarded), so it can't be flipped to a third team later, and the pick cannot be sold for cash. If the pick is traded, it must be exchanged for a player or player(s).

There are 13 MLB clubs that qualify to participate in this year's Competitive Balance Lottery (most of the teams qualify because they both are a small market team and because they receive revenue sharng):


Some of the teams that will be receiving Competitive Balance draft picks next Monday are contenders (one is even in 1st place in its division) and are expected to be "buyers" as the trade deadline nears, so don't be surprised if the Cardinals, Pirates, Rays, Reds, Orioles, Diamondbacks, and/or Indians trade their Competitive Balance draft pick before the July 31 trade deadline.

It could be that some of the teams looking to move assets (like the Cubs, for instance) are waiting for the Competitive Balance picks to be awarded before makng trades, since a Competitive Balance draft pick (especially one between the 1st and 2nd rounds) could actually have more value to a seller than the prospects being made available by the buyer.

If it turns out there are any forfeited lottery draft picks as the result of a club or clubs exceeding its 2012 Rule 4 Signing Bonus Pool by more than 5%, all MLB clubs will be eligible to participate in the lottery to receive the forfeited pick, except for those clubs that exeeded their assigned SBP (as the Cubs did when they signed 1st round pick Albert Almora).  

The Competitive Balance lottery will be weighted in favor of those clubs that finished with the worst records in the 2011 season, and the Forfeited Draft Pick lottery is weighted in favor of teams receiving revenue sharing.



As always Phil-thanks for educating us about things many of us didn't know.

Friday is the deadline for signing players selected in last month's First-Year Player Draft (Rule 4 Draft) as wells as the deadline for signing players who were eligible for selection in the draft but were not drafted (NDFA).

The Cubs have signed their top 18 picks, plus nine more players selected in rounds 21-40, and three Non-Drafted Free-Agents (NDFA).

Any bonus amount in excess of $100,000 given to a player selected below Round 10 or to a Rule 4 eligible NDFA is deducted from the club's Rule 4 Signing Bonus Pool, so don't expect the Cubs to give more than $100,000 to any of their unsigned draft picks (should any more be signed).

Although the deadline for signing Rule 4 Draft picks is this Friday, there is an important exception to the rule.

Unsigned college seniors with no college eligibility left can be signed at any time up until one week prior to next year's draft, so Cubs 2012 29th round pick RHP Austin Pentecost (Lewis-Clark State) will remain on the Cubs Negotiation List (with the Cubs retaining exclusive negotiation rights to Pentecost) until that time.

Also, any college senior with no eligibility left who was not drafted in last month's draft can be signed as a NDFA up until one week prior to next year's draft.

Wonder when they will promote Tim Saunders. 500+ BA can't be all luck.

from the "i never cared in the first place" department:

AAA black hole of lost hope mike macdougal has been released...he's looking "done."

Recent comments

The first 600 characters of the last 16 comments, click "View" to see rest of comment.
  • I'm guessing 3/30 and all the two foot long hot dogs you can eat didn't work

  • Yes! In a 12-way tie for first!

  • Shit.

    Blew my prediction! I had them signing Zimmerman and trading for another arm.

  • Damn wanted Zimmermann

  • Yeah, this market. Remember when Ted Lilly signed a 4/$40m with the Cubs? It was like "Well, I guess if you can throw a ball, that's what the 3 and 4 starters are all getting." I'm glad I'm not a GM. Of course, they're spending our money...

  • in this market that seems like a decent deal relative to the market.

    given that d.price will probably get 30m-ish a year, 22m for 29yo zimm doesn't seem bad. i wouldn't complain about him suiting up for the cubs. one less option gone...

  • Zimmermann 5/$110m with Tigers. Youch.

    And the updated predications page:

  • Cubs 3B Christian Villanueva (who is out of minor league options) is hitting 358/464/500 for Obregon in the Mexican Pacific League (LMP), and is leading the LMP in OBP, is second in BAvg and walks, is seventh in SLG, and is tied for 8th in HR. He also has struck out only 16 times in 175 PA. 

  • CTSteve, thanks for spelling Zimmermann correctly. We don't need another first baseman.

  • The media has linked Cueto and the Cubs approximately zero times this winter. I'm thinking there's just not a lot of interest there on the Cubs' part. It seems unlikely.

    If the Cubs miss on Price, Grienke, and Zimmerman, they will aim for a mid-rotation starter via free agency or trade. However, I think this scenario also significantly boosts the odds that they extend Arrieta.

  • The Tigers are going after Zimmermann and the Red Sox will be throwing money at Price. Bringing Cueto back to the NL with the Cubs is looking like a serious possibility. Thoughts?

  • Peter Abraham of the Boston Globe in the financial impact to the Red Sox for not signing Jon Lester early in the free agent process:

    It will be interesting to ultimately add up the cost of letting Jon Lester go.

    The Red Sox botched up their negotiations with Lester in during spring training of 2014, making an initial offer of $70 million that was roughly $40 million short of what it should have been. Talks broke down and Lester was traded in July.

  •'re flip-flopping again?!

    Is this legal? What is the rule here on opining definitively and then changing your mind?

    I am not only surprised at your declaration, but Cutler's better 2015 showing. I don't get it - he went through Martz, Turner, Trestman, Kromer, and now Gase...and he is still here! And. he'll be here mext year too.

  • Happ signs w Jays

    Morsi saying Price won't be a Jay

  • needs more d.beeler and e.jokisch

  • As an Illinois tax payer I appreciate what they r doing