Random bits of information in this post-Draft phase that might be of note to you …
- The Chicago Cubs drafted 40 players from Thursday through Saturday. You can see the recap from Day One’s action here. Day Two is here. And Day Three is here.
- Of those 40 players, 29 were college or junior college players, and just 11 were high schoolers. The Cubs didn’t take a high schooler until the 9th round (OF Charcer Burks). Their first high school pitcher didn’t come until the 12th round (RHP Trevor Clifton).
- Of the first 15 players drafted, just four were positional players (3B Kris Bryant first, OF Jacob Hannemann third, OF Charcer Burks ninth, and C Jordan Hankins eleventh). A full 10 of those 15 were college pitchers, and 9 of those 10 were righties.
- The Cubs’ slot values for their top ten picks are: $6,708,400, $1,361,900, $736,200, $477,300, $357,400, $267,600, $200,400, $159,400, $148,900, and $139,000. The Cubs’ strategy was pretty clearly to try and save a little under slot with picks two and three (LHP Rob Zastryzny and OF Jacob Hannemann) so that they could go slightly over slot with a handful of college pitchers who slipped in the Draft (and then an even smaller handful of high school talents that they took late). We’ll see if it works out, and the success of the strategy may largely depend on how much first round pick Kris Bryant requires to sign. If the Cubs can save just a few hundred thousand off of his allotted slot, they’ll be in pretty good shape to make a run at virtually everyone they selected (keep in mind, the Cubs can go over their total bonus pool by 5% without losing any draft picks – that means they’ve effectively already got an extra $500,000ish to play with). I’ll be keeping an eye on this as the signing information rolls in over the coming weeks.
- The deadline to sign draft picks is 4pm CT on July 12, just before the All-Star Game. College seniors are not subject to this deadline and can sign at any time up until the next Draft.
- The Cubs will not sign all of their draft picks. Signing anywhere from 30 to 35 picks would be considered a solid success (unless, of course, the five you don’t sign are the five best players). Last year the Cubs signed just 29 of their 42 selections. Most of those who didn’t sign were upside high schoolers who wanted to take their chances at college. It makes you wonder if that’s at least part of the reason the Cubs went college-heavy this time around. Keep in mind, though, that the 2012 draft wasn’t a failure: the Cubs signed all 20 of their top 20 selections.
- As players from the Draft sign, they will head to Mesa, Arizona, which is essentially the Cubs’ low-level minor league base of operations. Not only is Mesa home to the Cubs’ Spring Training, it is also home to minor league Spring Training, extended Spring Training, rookie ball, instructional ball, and the Arizona Fall League. It’s a year-round Cubs hub, and it’s the first place young players go to become acclimated to pro life and the Cubs organization.
- From there, some draftees will head out to short season Low-A ball in Boise, or will play in the Arizona Rookie League. Some will even head up higher in the organizational chain, depending on age and ability. The Northwest League begins play this Friday, June 14, and continues through early September. The Arizona Rookie League runs from June 20 through September 1.
- Many of the pitchers have already thrown a great deal of innings this season and will not pitch much more this year. Don’t take it as a bad sign if a guy throws only a handful of innings in Arizona.
- Because there is an influx of a bunch of new players around this time of year, you see a fair bit of organizational turnover. Players who never quite clicked or who have shown that they don’t have the potential to contribute meaningfully down the line will be let go. Others will be promoted up the ladder not only because they are ready, but also to make room for the youngsters taking their spots below them. It’s not unusual to see a great deal of promotion/demotion/release activity in June.