Finally, We've Got an Early Sense on When the MLB Draft Lottery Will Take Place

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Finally, We’ve Got an Early Sense on When the MLB Draft Lottery Will Take Place

Chicago Cubs

Say, why would a 2022 Chicago Cubs fan care about when the first ever MLB Draft lottery will take place

As you may remember, the new Collective Bargaining Agreement included, for the first time, a draft lottery for the teams that do not make the playoffs. The first six picks* will be available to all non-playoff teams, with the odds varying based on the team’s final record. Each of the bottom three teams will have identical 16.5% odds of landing the top overall pick, with odds dropping from there.

But when will those pick slots actually be determined? When are the ping pong balls dropping?!

Well, it’s not officially official yet, but it sounds like MLB is going to select a pretty sensible time:

Having the draft lottery at the Winter Meetings is a nice extra activity for that week while the sport has a little extra attention, and it’s plenty of distance before the next year’s draft so that if it impacts team scouting allocations, they should be fine. Moreover, since a team’s top pick no longer factors into the penalties for signing a qualified free agent, there’s no impact there either.

The Cubs currently have the 8th worst record in baseball, which gives them a 3.9% chance of leaping all the way to the top pick. Not great. Even their top six chance is just 32%. If you manage to be in the bottom five records, though, your top six chance goes all the way up to about 65%. So, it’s a huge difference in just a few places in the standings.

*(After the first six picks, there is still a set of pick odds involved, it’s just that the first six picks are the only ones that are definitely available to ALL non-playoff teams; once you get past the sixth pick, you are eligible to win either one of the first six picks, your own pick slot, or lower. So, for example, right now the Cubs could win one of the top six picks, could not win the 7th no matter what, could get the 8th, or could fall to the 9th, 10th, 11th, 12th, 13th, or 14th pick. You can see the full chart here at Tankathon.)

Author: Brett Taylor

Brett Taylor is the Editor and Lead Cubs Writer at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at @BleacherNation and @Brett_A_Taylor.