Today is the MLB Draft signing deadline, which is not usually a very eventful day in the bonus pool era, because the interrelated financing of signings means your signings in the top 10 rounds – and any overages thereafter – all have to be carefully orchestrated far in advance of today.
That said, you can still have a modest amount of drama, and apparently that includes the Cubs:
Should be a quiet @MLBDraft signing deadline (5 pm ET). I expect @Marlins will get supp 1st-rder Kameron Misner done, though it's not a 100% lock. Don't think @Rangers will sign 7th-rder Brandon Sproat or @Cubs will sign 10th-rder Wyatt Hendrie. Cubs may have some news though.
— Jim Callis (@jimcallisMLB) July 12, 2019
The Cubs have signed 30 of their top 32 selections, with only 10th rounder Wyatt Hendrie and 11th rounder Mack Chambers in question. Bryan went over the signings here earlier in the week.
Before you get carried away, the “news” being teased by MLB’s prospects writer is highly likely to be 11th rounder Mack Chambers officially signing with whatever extra bonus pool money the Cubs have scraped together.
My guess is they have been trying to make the Hendrie signing ($142,200 bonus slot) and the Chambers signing ($125,000 can be used before anything over that must come out of the bonus pool) work in conjunction without going more than 5% over their total bonus pool. The Cubs currently have about $24,000 in overage to work with. If they cannot sign Hendrie, then his $142,200 comes out of the bonus pool altogether, and the 5% overage for that (a little over $7,000) cannot be offered to Chambers. That would leave Chambers maxing out at around $140,000.
Hendrie is a junior college catcher who was not expected to go under slot – the Cubs tend to target guys they actually really like who might cost at or around slot in the 10th round, while other teams are all going after under slot seniors. It’s a risky strategy if you *have* to sign that guy to make the bonus pool work, but if you don’t, it’s a really nice move. It’s how the Cubs got Dakota Mekkes, for example, before teams would’ve been falling all over themselves to take him in the 11th round (the first round not tied to the bonus pool).
Anyway, hopefully the news is Chambers is going to sign regardless of Hendrie. Chambers is a great athlete with huge junior college numbers while playing shortstop. Would love to get him in the system and see what happens.