The Cincinnati Reds announced a bunch of draft pick signings on Tuesday afternoon. The team officially announced the signing of 17 draft picks. In the 2018 Cincinnati Reds Draft Tracker there are more players listed than that, but as noted on that page, those are agreements and not official signings. Guys need to pass physicals and have their contracts approved by Major League Baseball before they become official. Here are the players that were officially signed today:

  • 2nd Round RHP Lyon Richardson
  • 2nd Round CB Pick RHP Josiah Gray
  • 5th Round RHP Ryan Campbell
  • 6th Round RHP Yomil Maysonet
  • 7th Round C Jay Schuyler
  • 8th Round RHP Matthew Pidich
  • 9th Round RHP Andrew McDonald
  • 13th Round OF Brian Rey
  • 16th Round OF Drew Mount
  • 21st Round C Oliver Hunter
  • 24th Round LHP Connor Curlis
  • 25th Round RHP Ricky Salinas
  • 28th Round OF Brandt Stallings
  • 30th Round LHP Jacob Wyrick
  • 31st Round RHP Justin McGregor
  • 32nd Round C Edwards Guzman
  • 37th Round C Robert Boselli

Notable missing there are 3rd round selection Bren Spillane, and 4th round selection Mike Siani. Both players have agreed to deals, but as this is being typed aren’t quite official for one reason or another.

Thanks to the great work from MLB Pipeline writers Jonathan Mayo and Jim Callis, we’ve also got signing bonus details on these guys. With the new draft rules that have been in place for the last few years, teams must stay within their draft pool amount. Each pick has an assigned value in the Top 10 rounds, which counts towards your overall draft pool. You can spend that however you like, but you can’t spend more than the total value of those picks. Each pick after round 10 can be signed for up to $125,000. Anything over that counts towards the draft pool.

Currently the Cincinnati Reds are well beyond their spending limit for the players they have signed/agreed to terms with. Let’s take a look at how things add up.

Round  Name  Pos  Slot Signed for
1 Jonathan India 3B $5,946,400
2 Lyon Richardson RHP $1,520,300 $2,000,000
2CB Josiah Gray RHP $837,700 $775,000
3 Brenden Spillane OF $716,000 $600,000
4 Mike Siani OF $512,800 $2,000,000
5 Ryan Campbell RHP $382,900 $10,000
6 Yomil Maysonet RHP $287,700 $250,000
7 Jay Schuyler C $224,200 $210,000
8 Matt Pidich RHP $177,700 $10,000
9 Andrew McDonald RHP $152,600 $10,000
10 A.J. Moore RHP $142,100 $5,000

The Reds got discounts on most of these guys. But the two players that they didn’t got much larger than slot bonuses. Lyon Richardson got $479,700 more than slot. Mike Siani got a deal, if accurately reported, worth $1,487,200 more than slot value.

The Mike Siani deal is not yet official. It was reported that it was for $2,000,000. But, if there’s any wiggle room there, even if it’s just something like $100,000, that could be significant. If we assume it’s a deal at the full report, that means that the Cincinnati Reds currently are at a deficit of $916,000 that they will need to make up.

The draft rules do allow teams to go over their pool amount. But there are penalties. If you go over the budget, but stay under a 5% overage, then you just pay MLB a fine on that overage money. However, if you go over that 5% mark, you forfeit your 1st round pick the next season. No team has ever gone down that particular road.

Where can the Reds save, and how much do they need to save?

Jonathan India is the only player remaining where the Cincinnati Reds can “save” money. His slot value is $5,946,400. In order to avoid all penalties he would need to sign for $5,030,400. That’s a big discount, but not unheard of, either. Alec Bohm, who went 3rd overall, took a discount from his slot value that was nearly $1,000,000.

If the Reds need to use their “up-to-5%” overage, and just pay a cash penalty, then they could sign Jonathan India for up to $5,575,420. That would still be a solid discount for India to take, but again, not outside of what we’ve seen many times in the past.

With Jonathan India playing in the College World Series with the Florida Gators, he’s going to go unsigned until they are eliminated. Because of that, I would be surprised if we saw Mike Siani sign before that. If the Reds were to sign Siani for his reported bonus, and for some reason couldn’t get India to agree to a bonus between $5,030,400-$5,575,420, it would cost the Reds their 2019 1st round pick. While it’s incredibly likely that Cincinnati and India have agreed to a general number already, strange things can happen every so often. Due to that, expect Siani to probably not officially be in the fold for another few weeks.

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