It appears that it’s official. The 2020 Major League Baseball Draft will be limited to just five rounds. Ernest Dove who covers the Mets farm system for MetsMinors.net was the first to report on this as it being set.
SOURCE : 2020 mlb draft rules set:
*Will occur on June 10th
* 5 rounds
* Teams can utilize their allotted money as they see fit.
* Undrafted player signing period begins on 6/13 (20K max bonus)
*Draft signing deadline is 8/1
— Ernest Dove (@ernestdove) May 8, 2020
We saw last week that MLB actually proposed a 10-round draft this year – but with even more limited bonuses beyond the 5th round, and a limit on the number of undrafted free agent signings, too. The MLBPA turned down that offer, as is their right to do so. It seems that MLB didn’t try to extend another offer and has decided to go with the original agreement that was agreed upon between the two sides last month. Here are the rules:
- Five rounds total.
- Draft bonuses are the same as 2019 bonuses (they were slated to rise at the same rate as revenues, which would have been 2.5% this year).
- Bonuses are paid out over the next 25 months. Players get $100,000 of their bonus this year when they sign (or less if they agree to sign for under that amount). Then of the amount remaining they will get 50% of that paid out July 1st of 2021, and the remaining 50% of that paid out July 1st of 2022.
- Undrafted players can sign for UP TO $20,000. Teams can sign as many of these players as they would like.
This move seems to be entirely owner driven. And, well, they do get to make the final calls. But it seems that every single person who covers the draft or scouting at all is sharing stories that no one they talk to thinks it’s a good idea to limit the draft this much, or to cut down the amount of money to sign undrafted players. The amount of money being saved is less than $1M per team. Teams are probably trying to figure out where to save cash right now, but with the restrictions in place on the draft whether it is five or ten rounds, the amount of money saved this summer is far less than even the $1M total that it would save over the next 25 months.
Mark your calendars. June 10th. Five rounds. I’ll be here posting about all six of the players that the Cincinnati Reds draft this season (they have a competitive balance pick, along with their normal five picks).