Latest On CBA Talks

The collective bargaining agreement talks are at the ten-yard line, a source tells ESPN's Buster Olney. The latest…

  • There will be no agreement this week, tweets Bob Nightengale of USA Today.  Look for a deal around Thanksgiving, tweets Kevin Goldstein of Baseball Prospectus.
  • One idea discussed is a ceiling for draft bonuses based on slot recommendations for the first ten rounds, reports Olney.  There would be no need to adhere to slot for individual picks, but if a team exceeded the recommended ten-round total they'd be taxed the first time and would "lose a top pick" the second time.
  • Negotiations are in progress for first-round draft pick compensation to disappear, according to Olney.  I take this to mean that a team signing a Type A free agent would never have to surrender its first round pick.


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55 Comments on "Latest On CBA Talks"


YoungWerther
3 years 8 months ago

This is the worst idea for no Type A or B comp. Kills so much for so many teams. 

stl_cards16
3 years 8 months ago

I imagine there will still be compensation for the team losing the player.  It just won’t cost the signing team one of their own picks.  The compensation round will be larger now.  I’m guessing.

0bsessions
3 years 8 months ago

Which completely defeats half of the purpose. What’s to prevent a team like the Red Sox, a team that’s draft minded yet high market, from coming in and basically signing bucketloads of free agents and still being able to compete in the draft?

start_wearing_purple
start_wearing_purple
3 years 8 months ago

Well the purpose is kinda already defeated. The Sox last year signed Crawford and still had 4 picks before round 2. The year before we had 3 picks before round 2 after signing Lackey. I’m kinda curious if the Type A compensation has done more for big market teams rather than small market.

0bsessions
3 years 8 months ago

This breaks it even further, though. Instead of four picks before round two, we’d have had five because we wouldn’t have had to give up our first rounder for Crawford.

johnsilver
3 years 8 months ago

This new system they seem to be looking at on the face of it would even be more biased to teams like the NYY, Boston, Philly etc..

We know Epstein has backed off certain Type A FA before, unless he could get a marquee FA to make it worthwhile losing even a late 20’s 1st round pick. This new one being recomended sounds like Selig willing to do anything to get his slotting system for bonuses into place just to placate poor mouthing teams even more and IMO, they would be willing to go along with it, just to cut down on signing bonuses at any cost.

Some do not care how much if affects the game, even if they would just go out and spend 10m a year on the draft.. Which many are already to cheap to do.

Silence
3 years 8 months ago

This deal doesn’t worry me about the Red Sox, it worries me about the entire league. If this passes through than every team is going to start dishing out cash to any free agent. Think the Papelbon deal was dumb? Wait till’ the Phillies dish out an even more dumb contract to Cuddyer now knowing that you wont lose draft picks. This is a good deal for the protection of players making new homes, but this is absolutely trash for the owners who now have to be prepared to make some hefty moves to keep players in check. Hope there is a good substitute for removing this.

Edit: Teams like the Pirates, Padres, Mariners, Royals etc. are going to get butchered by this in the future, they now have to change their tactic of building a team and start spending money in the FA market.

0bsessions
3 years 8 months ago

I cite the Sox because they’re a prime example of a team that drafts well and spends big on free agents concurrently. Even as a Sox fan myself, I find the advantage a system like this gives the Sox is unfair.

Comparatively, while the Phillies and Yankees are affected as well, they’ve had a pretty high disregard for the high levels of the draft lately anyway.

3 years 8 months ago

There ARE limits on the number of Type A and B free agents that a club can sign in one year, but they are so loose that no team has ever reached the limit.   The limits are based on the total number of Type A and B’s, but realistically, it’s three players plus one for each  Type A or B that the team loses that year.  

One way to stop the hoarding is to simply tighten the limit and don’t let any club sign more than two Type A’s or three Type A and B’s in one year.

3 years 8 months ago

Yeah, the limit is 3, unless you’ve lost your own type A, in which case you can sign 3 + however many you lost

3 years 8 months ago

With slotting and putting a cap on amount of money teams can spend, you will have some top tier talent not go to baseball. It would be a very bad thing. Baseball does not need to continue to fall down the ranks of attractiveness for athletes.

Casor_Greener
3 years 8 months ago

I highly doubt it.

Very few kids will give up $1-3M in cash (first- second round picks) to go to college or try and play football.  

We will just start seeing more kids go the college route (low round picks).

3 years 8 months ago

Many of the best young athletes are generally not playing just one sport. A disadvantage against baseball is that it has a harder minor league system to go through to get to the pros, but that disadvantage was curbed by these excessive signing bonuses that allowed 18 year old kids to decide right away what sport they would focus on professionally. You put in a hard slotting system and you lose many great athletes.

Phillies_Aces35
3 years 8 months ago

Would we still lose our first round pick for signing Papelbon since he was signed prior to an agreement?

3 years 8 months ago

The new rules will either apply to the 2012 and subsequent drafts or the 2013 and subsequent drafts, regardless of the timing of specific signings. It doesn’t seem right to me to change the rules for the 2012 draft, since moves dating back to July will be impacted, but I’m not the one making the call, so we’ll have to see. The last time they changed draft compensation (prior to the ’07 season), the new rules didn’t go into effect until the 2008 draft.

Phillies_Aces35
3 years 8 months ago

Yeah, that was my thinking I just got confused by some of the reports out there. I agree with you, makes no sense to change compensation prior to next season.

3 years 8 months ago

It makes sense to the players to change it prior to next season. Type A compensation suppresses the market, particularly for fringier Type A guys, since teams are generally reluctant to part with premium draft picks if the return is not a true impact player.

It doesn’t seem fair from the fans’ perspective (mine included) to make the shift immediately, since we’ve all been considering that compensation when evaluating our teams’ moves. To have it retroactively impact the deals made over the past 6 months doesn’t sit right. However from what I’ve read, having the new rules affect the 2012 draft isn’t off the table. Right now, it’s a bargaining chip for the owners, because it’s something the players want.

More to your original question, though, if a new deal was signed today that changed Type A compensation, and then tomorrow, Ryan Madson signed with another team, the same set of rules (whether the old or new ones) would apply to both signings. So no need for you to worry on that front.

goner
3 years 8 months ago

“Type A compensation suppresses the market, particularly for fringier Type A guys”

This is the crux of the problem IMO… there should be no such thing as a “fringier” Type A guy.  Octavio Dotel and Kelly Johnson are type A free agents only because of their (statistically) strong 2010 seasons, which still weighs heavily in the 2011 calculations. 

They could easily fix this by applying some kind of “reality check” after the computer determines type A free agents.  Players like Pujols, Fielder, and Papelbon are all obvious type A free agents, while Johnson and Dotel are obviously not in the same class.

0bsessions
3 years 8 months ago

Probably. It’s highly unlikely teams will be cool with the rules changing in the middle of a free agency period.

Phillies_Aces35
3 years 8 months ago

I’m just confused by it since when the signing was leaked I saw an article by Rosenthal saying the Phillies signing Papelbon wouldn’t impact them because “he’d still be among the elite free agents that would require draft pick compensation.” So I took that to mean draft pick compensation was subject to change.

At least I think it was Rosenthal, might have been Olney or Stark.

notsureifsrs
3 years 8 months ago

the current agreement is in effect through december 11th. i don’t know for sure, but it doesn’t seem likely that the terms of the new agreement could apply retroactively to transactions that took place under the old one

i suppose at the end of the day they can do whatever they want, but it would be pretty weird

3 years 8 months ago

I think the Phillies were counting on losing a first rounder for Papelbon, but gaining two picks for Madson.

Alex
3 years 8 months ago

The draft bonus ceiling for the first ten rounds seems like a reasonable compromise, it won’t hamper smaller-market teams in the later rounds. However, doing away with draft pick compensation for Type A free agents might be a bit much, as many small-market teams rely on receiving draft picks back for their young stars that grow out of their price range and sign with other teams.

3 years 8 months ago

This isn’t about evening out odds for smaller market teams. It’s about cost cutting for all teams. If they’re all limited, they can’t go nuts for signing amateurs. Problem is that many high level amateur athletes are two sport athletes and the high signing potential is what kept many from leaving baseball because it already has the knock of a harder minor league system to get though to make it to the pros. If many two sport players see a real limit to what bonus money they can get in baseball, they will go to the sport which gives them a better chance to go pro sooner (which, usually, is all of them).

Alex
3 years 8 months ago

@Four_Aces35: The new CBA won’t take effect until 2013, IIRC.

EDIT: For some reason DISQUS isn’t letting me reply. Strange.

start_wearing_purple
start_wearing_purple
3 years 8 months ago

Disqus can get quirky.

I thought I heard someone, might have been Olney, say that the compensation for this year was going to be decided in the ongoing CBA talks.

3 years 8 months ago

I was under the impression that it hadn’t been settled yet whether the new draft compensation rules would take effect starting with the 2012 or the 2013 draft.

3 years 8 months ago

Baseball Nerds are the BEST!

3 years 8 months ago

The last thing they should be doing is punishing teams who actually spend money on the draft.

Blue387
3 years 8 months ago

I still think teams that finished under .500 should be able to spend heavily on the draft without any limit and limit those above .500 to a hard slot or ceiling. It would benefit teams like the Pirates and others and encourage acquiring talent for rebuilding efforts.

jb226
3 years 8 months ago

Getting rid of Type A compensation is a hatchet approach to fixing the real problem: The incredibly mediocre formulas and approach for actually determining the ratings.

Seldom do teams balk at signing legitimate Type As; guys who nobody in the world would ever disagree with their status.  Nobody out there is going “well I was going to sign Albert Pujols but he’s a Type A, forget it!”  The problem is for the borderline guys, the guys who probably shouldn’t even have the rating but did because some miracle of the numbers appreciated the number of innings they pitched more than more advanced metrics rated their performance — or because their comparables were simply more awful.

In fact maybe that is the first place to look for a fix: Get rid of the notion that a certain percentage of players need to end up being Type As and instead make a specific numeric cutoff based on whatever formula you use.  You beat a certain performance level, you’re a Type A.  You’re the best of a crappy crop?  We’re not going to saddle you with the designation.  

stl_cards16
3 years 8 months ago

Boras clients will be demanding for teams to NOT select them before round 11.

Brv Rocks
3 years 8 months ago

Interesting thought.  It is very possible that the very best talents will now slip to the 11th round because the players/agents tell teams beforehand that they won’t sign for any recommended slot amount.  I’m not sure this solves any of the current problems with the draft.

start_wearing_purple
start_wearing_purple
3 years 8 months ago

Gotta imagine it might make rounds 6-10 a little irrelevant. If you already know you’re spending big money in the first few rounds then teams will probably make safe, low cost picks during the rest of first 10 rounds.

Also bring up another question, will there be something to address teams that have multiple picks from the comp rounds? I gotta imagine those picks will be less coveted if teams are on a strict budget.

3 years 8 months ago

Well, the more picks a team has, the more slot money they would have.  It’s not like a team with 10 picks in 10 rounds would have the same imposed budget as a team with 15 picks in 10 rounds.  Each pick would add the recommended slot to the budget.

johnsmith4
3 years 8 months ago

I can see it happening.  In this year’s draft, Jays drafted 54th ranked (by Baseball America) Matt Dean in 13th round and signed him for $737k.

icedrake523
3 years 8 months ago

A football analogy in a baseball article? This is an outrage!

start_wearing_purple
start_wearing_purple
3 years 8 months ago

I feel like that should be followed up by a George Carlin quote.

“Baseball begins in the spring, the season of new life. Football begins in the fall, when everything is dying.”

icedrake523
3 years 8 months ago

I may be biased since Carlin is my favorite comedian, but I think that’s the funniest comedy bit about sports.

3 years 8 months ago

Robin Williams on the origins of golf is hilarious, but Carlin is awesome too.

Eugene_in_Oregon
3 years 8 months ago

Agreed.  It should be ‘in the ninth inning’ or some such.  And please, oh please, don’t start talking about ‘sudden death overtime’ or any such drivel.

3 years 8 months ago

Draft picks should still be taken away, but I feel that Type A & B is too easy to get. Last year Scott Downs was a Type A? Willingham, with a .246 BA, .810 OPS and 1.8 WAR is equal to Pujols as a Type A?? Doesn’t make sense. 

johnsmith4
3 years 8 months ago

Not entirely equal…if a team signs both Downs and Pujols (hypothetically speaking), then compensation for Downs turns into a 2nd and a sandwich pick.  In fact, that is precisely what Blue Jays received for Downs.  A 2nd round and a sandwich pick.

$7562574
3 years 8 months ago

without limiting what top 3 teams spending all these things are for naught.

Cyyoung
3 years 8 months ago

They should punish the team more that signs a Class A Free Agent, not less. Small Market teams are getting killed.

stl_cards16
3 years 8 months ago

What needs addressed is the poor revenue sharing plan in place.  If they had a fair revenue sharing system that came close to allowing the small market teams to be competitive, the compensation for free agents would not be as big of an issue.

johnsilver
3 years 8 months ago

There is still no excuse for a team like the Astros as an example that are cheap every season on the draft, yet will go out and sign useless aged veteran who have almost no hope of helping anyone, Billy Hall comes to mind right away as a perfect example and not spend on the draft which is how the game is “supposed” to be more or less done.. Tampa is a perfect example of a city/team in a market situation even worse than Houston, yet they always save some for the draft, unlike Houston and a few other teams always whining about it.

Teams/fans can complain all they want about revenue sharing, but quite possibly getting priorities straight on where to spend $$ should be job #1.

goner
3 years 8 months ago

Ouch… that’s the same recipe that Dave Littlefield, Neal Huntington’s predecessor in Pittsburgh, followed for far too long. 

I’m still not convinced that NH can recognize major league talent, but at least they’re actively trying to get more talent thru the draft.

johnsilver
3 years 8 months ago

” that’s the same recipe that Dave Littlefield, Neal Huntington’s predecessor in Pittsburgh, followed for far too long.”

Some teams get their house in order, fire inept General managers, then go out and hire decent Scouting directors and enough scouts in general to get the job done.. I agree (too late however) that Huntington is doing a decent job the last couple of years in bringing in MANY top dog picks and doing fairly well Internationally.. They are starting to live within their means and “play ball” the Tampa Rays way, which seems to work on a limited budget.

Was vocal here in hammering Huntington when he was moving all of his star players a couple years back.. Bay, VanSlyke etc.. But see now he had no chance of retaining them anyway and got people back at least in return to try and build with. More of these low/no budget teams maybe should model themselves on this Rays, now pirates model rather than stand there with hands out looking for free cash as a scapegoat crying poor, then signing these 35YO fringe player FA to outrageous contracts that could have paid for an entire decent draft year class.

Encarnacion's Parrot
3 years 8 months ago

Having the type-A compensation is a way to balance out the talent teams have. The big spending teams must love this: now instead of signing a big-name and weakening their farm because of it, their parent club gets stronger while their farm continues to do so. This basically makes the small-market teams even less likely to ever compete.

I still think not allowing relievers to become type-A’s is about all that needs to be modified.

lefty177
3 years 8 months ago

shouldn’t they be taking a lead off 3rd base? Not on the 10-yard line

goner
3 years 8 months ago

Agreed… even non-baseball fans can appreciate getting to second (or third) base.

Commander_Nate
3 years 8 months ago

They should include an amendment banning references to that other, inferior sport created in the US in all future baseball articles and telecasts.

3 years 8 months ago

get rid of losing the 1st round pick and give the team 2 sandwich picks instead. 

0bsessions
3 years 8 months ago

I’ve noted it before, but I think the biggest difference here is having a strike in recent memory. Selig was around for the 1994 strike and he has to recall vividly how much damage that did to the sport. He’s well aware of what can happen if he doesn’t keep an open and cordial dialogue.

Conversely, no one in the NBA seems to want to accept the fact that between this and the ref betting scandal from a few years back, the NBA could be in for a heap of trouble once this nasty business is finally resolved.