Sunday Insider: Talking dollars and sense with MLB draft

  • Article by: LA VELLE E. NEAL III , Star Tribune
  • Updated: June 10, 2012 - 8:37 AM

Less than a week after the draft, several No. 1 picks already have signed, a hint that new MLB rules are working.

Major League Baseball's No. 1 draft pick Carlos Correa, 17, from Puerto Rico, participates in an infield drill after signing with the Houston Astros before a baseball game between the St. Louis Cardinals and the Astros, Thursday, June 7, 2012, in Houston.

Photo: Pat Sullivan, Associated Press - Ap

CameraStar Tribune photo galleries

Cameraview larger

The first-year player draft is over, and it's time to find out how well Major League Baseball's efforts to restrict wild spending on signing bonuses will work.

We won't know for sure until all the contracts are signed, but there already are some things about which to be encouraged.

As of Friday, five first-round picks already had signed. With the league imposing budgets and setting slot recommendations, there's less room for teams and players to negotiate up or down. There are indications that the Twins are close to agreements with several draft picks, and that negotiations with Byron Buxton, the second overall pick Monday, won't take long.

Perhaps the best thing to come from the new system is that the league also has moved up the signing deadline to July 13, which many are applauding.

"It benefits everyone," said Mike Radcliff, Twins director of player personnel. "The player, the organization, the scouting director. And the colleges, they can go out and replace the guys they didn't get. That is one positive repercussion of the agreement."

Here are some other notes following one of the most important drafts in Twins history:

Strategy

The talk of the draft was about teams selecting players they could sign for less than the league's recommendations, giving them more room to sign players in rounds five through 10. In most cases, that meant drafting college seniors, who have little leverage because they can't return to college.

Houston took shortstop Carlos Correa with the first overall pick and he agreed to a $4.8 million bonus, well under the league's recommendation of $7.2 million. The savings will help the Astros in their efforts to sign righthander Lance McCullers Jr., who dropped to 41st overall reportedly because of salary demands.

The Twins didn't go that route, but their picks were interesting.

Several picks over the first seven rounds were ranked by Baseball American to go lower than where the Twins selected them. In the sixth round, for instance, they took lefthander Andre Martinez with the 190th pick when he was ranked as the 404th-best prospect.

Everything turned around after the seventh round. Every player the Twins selected was supposed to be off the board by then. Was it intentional?

"It's about what you think the players are worth," Radcliff said.

What's next?

Teams now turn their attention to July 2, when international players can be signed as long as they are 16 years old. Amaurys Minier, a shortstop from the Dominican Republic, and Luis Torrens, a catcher from Venezuela, are two players in which the Twins are interested. The rules have changed here as well. Teams can't spend more than $2.9 million on their international signings.

First one up?

Who will be the first player from the Twins' draft class to be called up? I'll go with second-round pick Mason Melotakis, from Northwestern State. He's lefthanded and throws 96 miles per hour with a good breaking ball. The Twins will give him a chance to start, but I can see him getting to the bigs in a little over a year as a reliever.

  • related content

  • Sunday Insider: Central Intelligence

    Sunday June 10, 2012

    The great Justin Verlander was 24-5 last season but entered the weekend on pace to go 15-12, an example of how hard it is to sustain dominance.

  • Sunday Insider: The 3-2 pitch

    Sunday June 10, 2012

    • Out of 1,238 players selected in this year's draft, 14 participated in the Revitalizing Baseball in Inner Cities (RBI) program. I expected more from a program that's been in...

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions
Top 2nd123456789RHE
Cleveland00       000
Minnesota0        010
Preview | Matchup | Lineup | Log | Wrap | Box
HR: CLE- None MIN- None

ADVERTISEMENT

Texas - WP: N. Martinez 5 FINAL
Miami - LP: N. Eovaldi 4
Seattle - LP: J. Paxton 3 FINAL
Philadelphia - WP: C. Hamels 4
Toronto - WP: R. Dickey 9 FINAL
Milwaukee - LP: J. Nelson 5
NY Mets - WP: Z. Wheeler 8 FINAL
Oakland - LP: J. Samardzija 5
Atlanta 1 Top 6th Inning
Pittsburgh 0
Houston 1 Top 5th Inning
NY Yankees 1
Arizona 0 Top 5th Inning
Washington 1
LA Angels 0 Top 4th Inning
Boston 3
Detroit 1 Top 6th Inning
Tampa Bay 0
Cincinnati 0 Bottom 4th Inning
St. Louis 1
San Francisco 4 Bottom 1st Inning
Chicago Cubs 0
Baltimore 0 Top 2nd Inning
Chicago WSox 2
Cleveland 0 Top 2nd Inning
Minnesota 0
Kansas City - D. Duffy 7:40 PM
Colorado - J. De La Rosa
San Diego - E. Stults 9:10 PM
Los Angeles - R. Hernandez
Pittsburgh 8/21/14 6:30 PM
Philadelphia
Carolina 8/22/14 6:30 PM
New England
NY Giants 8/22/14 6:30 PM
NY Jets
Jacksonville 8/22/14 6:30 PM
Detroit
Oakland 8/22/14 7:00 PM
Green Bay
Chicago 8/22/14 9:00 PM
Seattle
Tampa Bay 8/23/14 3:30 PM
Buffalo
Tennessee 8/23/14 6:00 PM
Atlanta
Dallas 8/23/14 6:00 PM
Miami
Washington 8/23/14 6:30 PM
Baltimore
New Orleans 8/23/14 7:00 PM
Indianapolis
Minnesota 8/23/14 7:00 PM
Kansas City
St. Louis 8/23/14 7:00 PM
Cleveland
Houston 8/23/14 8:00 PM
Denver
San Diego 8/24/14 3:00 PM
San Francisco
Cincinnati 8/24/14 7:00 PM
Arizona
Los Angeles 8:00 PM
Colorado
San Jose 9:00 PM
Seattle
Montreal 8/22/14 7:30 PM
Winnipeg
Toronto 8/23/14 3:00 PM
Edmonton
Calgary 8/24/14 2:00 PM
Ottawa
Saskatchewan 8/24/14 6:00 PM
Brt Columbia
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: How sure are you that the Twins are on the road to improving?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close