Like most everything else, the MLB draft will take place in an unusual fashion this year. This year’s 2020 Rule 4 amateur selection show will launch at 5pm EST, but it’ll be held remotely and it will end after only five rounds — well shy of the typical forty-round affair. Bonuses will be capped as usual, but they won’t be paid up front. Instead, players can only receive up to $100K at the outset, with the rest deferred to 2021-22.
Three days from now, draft-eligible players that went unselected will be eligible to sign. There’ll be a large number of worthwhile candidates out there, but none can sign for more than $20K under the coronavirus-specific rules.
The atypical circumstances only increase the potential for wild outcomes. It might feel like normal at the top of the draft, where the scuttlebutt is that the Tigers will kick things off by taking ASU first bagger Spencer Torkelson, but things could get weird quickly thereafter. There has been some chatter that a team could even punt the draft — perhaps even one that has a fairly lofty draft position, per R.J. Anderson of CBS Sports. Baseball America’s J.J. Cooper examined that possibility, concluding it likely doesn’t make much sense for a team to pursue.
We’ll find out soon enough. As we wait, here are some resources to learn up on how this year’s draft came together or see how prognosticators expect it to turn out …
- Teams That Gained Or Lost Draft Picks Via Qualifying Offer Free Agents
- Several Prospects Withdraw From 2020 Draft
- 2020 MLB Draft Order
- Fangraph’s Mock Draft 2.0 & 2020 Draft Primer
- Baseball America’s Mock Draft 8.0
- ESPN.com’s Mock Draft 3.0
- MLB.com’s Latest Mock Draft
- The Athletic’s Final First-Round Projection