As the post-season chase takes shape, it’s time again to think about the placement of the teams that are falling out of the picture. While those in the mix for pole draft position sit at or near the bottom of their respective divisions, they stand to cash in with lofty selections in next year’s draft. This season’s Reverse Standings will be updated as results come in, and can always be accessed via the right-side toolbar (under “MLBTR Features”) at MLBTradeRumors.com.
Why “reverse standings”? Draft order is determined by simple reference to win-loss record at the end of the season, worst to first. Any ties are broken by awarding the higher pick to the team that had the lesser winning percentage in the prior season. (While compensation picks are given to teams that fail to sign players from the previous draft, at one slot below the selection, that rule won’t impact things this time around since all of the 2015 first rounders are under contract.)
The other important thing to note, of course, is the concept of protected picks. While a team that signs a free agent who declined a qualifying offer sacrifices its highest draft choice, teams awarded top-ten selections are not required to part with those picks to sign such a player. Instead, those clubs would give up their next-highest pick in the event that they sign a QO-rejecting free agent. In the reverse standings linked above, protected selections are denoted with a green check mark.
As things stand entering today’s action, the Braves are right on the heels of the Phillies for the first overall choice in the 2016 draft. Landing the top overall pick not only gives a team a chance to take any player available, as Baseball America’s Ben Badler explained yesterday (Twitter links), but provides that club with a massive bonus pool and the ability to “control the leverage of the entire draft” by reaching arrangements with other top players that can be selected with later picks.
The Astros have demonstrated that approach several times in recent years. Back in 2012, they took Carlos Correa over Byron Buxton in part to help add Lance McCullers Jr. and Rio Ruiz (not to mention players like Brett Phillips and Preston Tucker). And last year, utilizing a pair of top-five selections, the club was able to score top-ten talent Daz Cameron in the 37th overall slot.
Notably, also, several teams in the “race” for top draft picks already have — or could obtain by trade — competitive balance selections that would open more slot money and an additional early selection. Those choices, which take place after the first round (including its qualifying offer-compensation component), were determined by lottery. The Reds, A’s, Rockies, D’backs, Marlins and Pirates received the six Round A picks this year, in that order, and all but Pittsburgh also stand to pick up top-ten selections if the current reverse standings hold.
As an A’s fan, I’ve been watching this “race” closely for over a month. It’s very weird to want your team to lose.
Race to the bottom!
It’s crazy how down the National League is. The five worst records in baseball, with almost every team in the NL being bad. It’s no wonder NL teams with so many deficiencies are challenging for 90+ wins. I’m not sure anyone in the NL but the Cards and the Mets truly belongs in the playoffs.
Ummm Pirates? Cubs? Dodgers? While there are a bunch of bad teams, there are a bunch of good ones as well
This. Just more extremes in the NL, whereas the AL is all pretty much mediocre. I would argue five of seven top teams in baseball are in NL, with only Blue Jays and Royals, and not sure about Blue Jays.
It doesn’t necessarily mean AL teams are mediocre. It just that their talent is more balanced. Who’s to say the a team like the Astros wouldn’t be the best team in the NL, or that the Cardinals would be in second place in the AL East?
I think logic and common sense says that the Cardinals, with the best record in the majors by far, would not be the second place team in the AL East.
Common sense, yeah. Logic, not so much. They have the best record in baseball because they’ve been playing teams in the NL. Are the Cardinals that good, or are the other teams that bad? What is the NL had 14 teams like the Phillies and one team like the Angels? The Angels would probably win 110 games. Is that because they are good, or because the other 14 teams are bad? Either way though, it’s impossible to say.
What if every team in baseball is bad?
Maybe its the Bridgeport Bluefishs time to shine
If each team plays 18 games against their division rivals,the Mets and the Nationals play 33% of their games against the two worst teams and the 5th worst team in the NL. The Nationals are still only 2 games above .500 after all that.
The Cards play against two bottom feeders and 2 teams that are near locks as the NL wild card teams. They seem to be in the strongest division in the NL. Not a Cards fan, but the record seems to speak for itself.
No, those are very flawed teams with good records, likely more due to the lack of competition than anything. I’m not sure those teams are .500 teams every year.