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

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  • there's nothing like crapping out of the playoffs with a strong/young cheap team after pinching pennies for years then having theo talk about having to be creative with money to make things work for 2016...but hey, baseball isn't baseball without a farmer's market and beer garden plaza with ice rinks.

    they can do both...then again, if you want to look at it from a business point of view, they don't have to do both because the team is expected to be competitive and the merch+tickets+eyes-on-team are going to be at a peak unless they fail badly.

  • Really ?

    They are trying to bring the facility to the 20th century.
    I think they know what they are doing.

  • With the Cubs adding Pierce Johnson to their roster and not exposing/losing him to the Rule 5 Draft keeps the trade ancestry tree alive that started in 1999 with Tom Gordon and undrafted Adam Morrissey and includes 17 players, the trade tree progressed to involve the Hee Sop Choi for Derrek Lee deal and the famous Aramis Ramirez/Kenny Lofton deal..Pierce Johnson is the compensation pick for Aramis Ramirez in 2012

  • Well played.

  • Yeah, the Rex brothers, Tyrannosaurus and Oedipus

  • When I first saw the Tweet, I thought there were two guys. Happy Thanksgiving gang! And TheoJed!

  • They can use another Brother

  • Cubs acquired Rex Brothers. Awesome fit for this team. Wander Cabrera going to COL.

  • "MLB announces #Cubs Minor League RHP Tanner Griggs receives 50-game suspension without pay after testing positive for amphetamine"

    2014 12th rounder...

    it's hard to know who to blame...on one hand he's a baseball player, on the other he sells cars in the offseason...either job leads to amphetamine abuse. =p

  • Thanks PHIL! I thought only the Cubs had control until the last day of the MLB 2015 Season.

  • that's awesome...makes me look forward to hearing theo talk some more about how the team needs to be creative with finances because money is tight.


  • See What The Cubs Are Building This Off-Season For Wrigley Plaza, Clubhouse

  • CUBBIES-4-EVER: It's not unusual for a PTBNL to be chosen after the Rule 5 Draft from the list of Rule 5 eligible players who were not selected. That way, a club gets a player they like (perhaps somebody like OF Jeffrey Baez) without the cumbersome Rule 5 roster restrictions that go with a Rule 5 Draft pick.

  • Clayton Richard is absolutely, positively NOT a free-agent. He is under club control through the 2016 season. 

  • Haren was 4-2 with a 4.01 ERA with the Cubs. Seems like he worked out just as expected.