At the end of each season, The Elias Sports Bureau ranks all MLB players numerically based on a bunch of stats. Every player is categorized in one of five position groups and by league. The rankings cover a two-year time period. They are used to determine whether free agents are Type A, Type B, or neither. If you'd like a reminder on how draft pick compensation works, read up here.
Eddie Bajek of Detroit Tigers Thoughts reverse-engineered the Elias Rankings last year. Eddie's incredible work was made possible in large part due to information provided by ESPN's Keith Law. Eddie is now providing the rankings exclusively to MLB Trade Rumors. Today's snapshot covers the beginning of the 2008 season through September 1st, 2009. The rankings will change over the remainder of the season. Keep in mind that if players change leagues, they are ranked in their new league.
Speaking of players who changed leagues, Eddie is not sure what ranking Jim Thome will garner in the NL. Thome was a Type A in the AL, but Eddie's best guess is that he will be neither Type A nor B in the NL. The catch is that there is no precedent for an NL player with no games played at any position. But if Thome is grouped with the NL's 1B/OF category, he'll fall below Type B status and draft pick compensation will not come into play. Also, Jose Contreras is now in the NL and is neither Type A nor B.
Click here to see the latest Elias Rankings.