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Monday, November 14, 2011

Olney: Latest on CBA Talks

Continuing in MLB’s plan to make sure that two-sport athletes never choose baseball over football ever again:

• There will be slot recommendations for the first 10 rounds. No team is required to honor the individual recommendations, but there will be a cumulative number—a bonus ceiling—based on those recommendations assigned to each team for the first 10 rounds.

• If a team goes over its cumulative slot recommendation, there will be a tax for the first time, and the second time they will lose a high draft pick, perhaps in the first or second round.

• In return, the players would get this concession from the owners—there will be no first-round pick draft compensation. In recent years, teams have become increasingly reluctant to sign free agents tied to first-round draft picks, which has impacted the market for those players. There will continue to be draft pick compensation, but in some other form—either in later rounds or in supplemental rounds.

CraigK Posted: November 14, 2011 at 09:57 PM | 53 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   1. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: November 14, 2011 at 10:59 PM (#3993469)
Well, that sucks for the Pirates.
   2. Robert in Manhattan Beach Posted: November 14, 2011 at 11:04 PM (#3993480)
In recent years, teams have become increasingly reluctant to sign free agents tied to first-round draft picks, which has impacted the market for those players.

Well, no, but we thank Mr. Boras for contributing this talking point. Free agents are still doing just fine. Too well, if anything.
   3. The District Attorney Posted: November 14, 2011 at 11:07 PM (#3993482)
So in other words, the "recommendations" aren't recommendations.

If a team goes over its cumulative slot recommendation, there will be a tax for the first time
The first time in a given draft, or the first time in franchise history??
   4. Good cripple hitter Posted: November 14, 2011 at 11:14 PM (#3993492)
The first time in a given draft, or the first time in franchise history??


Based on the excerpt, this has to mean in franchise history. The recommendations for each round's pick are combined into the cumulative slot for each team. You can go over slot for an individual pick without punishment, but go over the lot for the entire draft and you get fined and/or lose picks next year.
   5. JRVJ Posted: November 14, 2011 at 11:22 PM (#3993499)
I, for one, am shocked that it is highly likely that we will go through a 20 year period of no labor strife in MLB.
   6. JRVJ Posted: November 14, 2011 at 11:22 PM (#3993500)
At least.
   7. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: November 14, 2011 at 11:24 PM (#3993502)
In recent years, teams have become increasingly reluctant to sign free agents tied to first-round draft picks, which has impacted the market for those players.

Well, no, but we thank Mr. Boras for contributing this talking point.


For Type A non-closer relievers, at least, it most certainly has been an issue. Look at the problems Juan Cruz had finding a new team over the 2009-2010 offseason, for just one example.

Orlando Hudson had issues, too, the last few times he entered FA.
   8. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: November 14, 2011 at 11:26 PM (#3993507)
The FA compensation system is dumb, but I don't think FA compensation is dumb. Ditch the Elias rankings and base the compensation on the size of the contract they get. Top ten total guaranteed contract values are Type As, next twenty are Type Bs, etc. That way relievers aren't overvalued and you don't get comp for crappy guys like Brad Hawpe. It might also have an interesting effect on contract offers ("ah we can offer you X amount, but if we offer you more, you might become a Type A!")

The cap on draft spending is beyond stupid. So if anyone lands a Strasburg type with the #1 overall pick, they pretty much have to forgo the rest of the draft. Nice.
   9. ...and Toronto selects: Troy Tulowitzki Posted: November 14, 2011 at 11:30 PM (#3993510)
The cap on draft spending is beyond stupid. So if anyone lands a Strasburg type with the #1 overall pick, they pretty much have to forgo the rest of the draft. Nice.

Yip. Sounds like it.
   10. NJ in DC (Now unemployed!) Posted: November 14, 2011 at 11:30 PM (#3993511)
The cap on draft spending is beyond stupid. So if anyone lands a Strasburg type with the #1 overall pick, they pretty much have to forgo the rest of the draft. Nice.

This.
   11. Poster Nutbag Posted: November 14, 2011 at 11:34 PM (#3993512)
Re: 8-10

Somewhat...but there is another aspect to consider. Teams won't pay too much for a guy anymore. Players/Agents will have to realize that if they want to play/get paid, they're going to have to conform to the slot-system. It is essentially going to going to drive the absurd bunses back down to reasonable levels. Strasburg-type contracts will die. Give it time.
   12. Brian C Posted: November 14, 2011 at 11:44 PM (#3993524)
Ditch the Elias rankings and base the compensation on the size of the contract they get.

If the MLBPA doesn't like the current system, they're really going to hate this.
   13. MM1f Posted: November 14, 2011 at 11:54 PM (#3993528)
Somewhat...but there is another aspect to consider. Teams won't pay too much for a guy anymore. Players/Agents will have to realize that if they want to play/get paid, they're going to have to conform to the slot-system. It is essentially going to going to drive the absurd bunses back down to reasonable levels. Strasburg-type contracts will die. Give it time.


And drive talented two-sport players away from baseball. What is your basis for saying that teams pay "too much" for guys, for saying that their contracts are "absurd"? Its pretty obvious Steven Strasburg, for one, is making less than he is worth.
   14. Best Regards, President of Comfort, Esq. Posted: November 15, 2011 at 12:06 AM (#3993533)
I, for one, am shocked that it is highly likely that we will go through a 20 year period of no labor strife in MLB.
I think within 10-20 years we will look back on the 1994 Strike as one of the best things to every happen to baseball. Had the CBA in 1994 been resolved without cancelling the World Series, we almost certainly would have had a strike in 2002, and depending on how that turned out, another one, and may be looking at a strike or a lockout right now.

Because the result of the 1994 strike was so damaging to everyone, both sides realized that a strike is an unacceptable outcome, and they came to a deal that both sides could live with. Since then, they've changed some things, but haven't gone for any major changes that would threaten a lockout or a strike. They both have figured out that while the system could be better for both sides, it's actually fine as-is. Which is why if they don't get the CBA worked out before it expires, there will be no work stoppage -- both the players and owners are okay with playing under the old CBA until they agree to the new one.
   15. esseff Posted: November 15, 2011 at 12:11 AM (#3993538)
Somewhat...but there is another aspect to consider. Teams won't pay too much for a guy anymore. Players/Agents will have to realize that if they want to play/get paid, they're going to have to conform to the slot-system. It is essentially going to going to drive the absurd bunses back down to reasonable levels. Strasburg-type contracts will die. Give it time.


Based on the cumulative nature of this system, it sounds like the must-sign top of the draft guys are still going to get theirs, and it's the players in rounds 3-10 who are going to be hosed.
   16. Tripon Posted: November 15, 2011 at 12:11 AM (#3993539)

And drive talented two-sport players away from baseball. What is your basis for saying that teams pay "too much" for guys, for saying that their contracts are "absurd"? Its pretty obvious Steven Strasburg, for one, is making less than he is worth.


I don't know about the impact about that. Pro Football/Basketball still forces their prospects to go to college and wait 3/1 years respectively.

The money baseball offering is still significant.
   17. andrewberg Posted: November 15, 2011 at 12:13 AM (#3993541)
Whenever I hear about 2-sport athletes being driven away from baseball, I raise an eyebrow. Anecdotally, the list of guys who have had the chance to play pro baseball or another pro sport is almost exclusively made up of guys who chose baseball. The fact that you can finish a baseball career with the ability to walk and without slicing his life expectancy way down seems to register early in life.
   18. fra paolo Posted: November 15, 2011 at 12:16 AM (#3993545)
I think within 10-20 years we will look back on the 1994 Strike as one of the best things to every happen to baseball.

That's one way to put it, but partly the revenue-sharing system has taken some of the stress out of the small-market vs large-market confrontation. The small-market teams have mostly been the hawks in negotiations, as in 1994.
   19. Bhaakon Posted: November 15, 2011 at 12:20 AM (#3993550)

Somewhat...but there is another aspect to consider. Teams won't pay too much for a guy anymore. Players/Agents will have to realize that if they want to play/get paid, they're going to have to conform to the slot-system. It is essentially going to going to drive the absurd bunses back down to reasonable levels. Strasburg-type contracts will die. Give it time.


Nah, the next Strasbourg will just move to the DR and declare himself an amateur free agent.
   20. Tripon Posted: November 15, 2011 at 12:23 AM (#3993554)


Nah, the next Strasbourg will just move to the DR and declare himself an amateur free agent.


No American kid is going to renounce his United States citizenship just so he can be an amateur free agent.
   21. Bhaakon Posted: November 15, 2011 at 12:24 AM (#3993555)
No American kid is going to renounce his United States citizenship just so he can be an amateur free agent.



How much would I have to pay you to renounce your citizenship?
   22. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: November 15, 2011 at 12:32 AM (#3993560)
Are we assuming that the cap would be the same for all teams? I'm assuming that a team with the first overall pick would have a cap number higher than the team who has their first pick at #28 to account for differences in value. Maybe I'm wrong but that's how the slot recommendations work now so why wouldn't that continue?
   23. esseff Posted: November 15, 2011 at 12:33 AM (#3993561)
Nah, the next Strasbourg will just move to the DR and declare himself an amateur free agent.



Based on the Jaime Garcia example, you go to high school in the U.S., you go into the draft, even if you live in another country.
   24. Bob Tufts Posted: November 15, 2011 at 12:34 AM (#3993562)
The union tossed the owners a bone as it relates to players that were not union members.

But beyond supposedly saving money, were draft picks a good investment? Let's ask Ross Ohlendorf via Tim Kurkjian and his thesis "Investing in Prospects: A Look at the Financial Successes of Major League Baseball Rule IV Drafts from 1989 to 1993"

Ohlendorf majored in Operations Research and Financial Engineering at Princeton, a major that combined mathematics, engineering and economics. His thesis was written on the June amateur draft, which will be held on Tuesday. Ohlendorf examined the top 100 picks from 1989 to 1993, tracked the progress of each player for a 12-year period, starting with the draft, to determine the value of the picks. Ohlendorf studied the investment (signing bonus) and the financial return from signing the player.

"The financial return is not cut and dry like the signing bonus, so I did my best to estimate it for the players in the study,'' he said. "The vast majority of the return was determined by the player's contribution in the major leagues prior to reaching free agency, and his salary over that period.''

What were his findings?

"On average,'' Ohlendorf said, "the player brought twice the return.''


As for whether Ross' marginal revenue generated exceeded marginal cost.....
   25. JRVJ Posted: November 15, 2011 at 12:36 AM (#3993566)
Larry, I was a little bit removed from baseball in 1994 (I guess I was at an age - 23 - where watching sports was a little secondary to going out, finishing school and such), but I can tell you that 1981 shattered my 10 year old heart.

That 10 year old definitely hopes that baseball-loving- kids don't have the rug pulled out from their baseball watching hearts again.
   26. Dock Ellis on Acid Posted: November 15, 2011 at 12:43 AM (#3993570)
Is the "cumulative slot recommendation" going to apply to just the first 10 rounds? Can a team pay 2M to an 11th rounder and not count against the cumulative slot recommendation?
   27. Benji Gil Gamesh Rises Posted: November 15, 2011 at 12:55 AM (#3993581)
Somewhat...but there is another aspect to consider. Teams won't pay too much for a guy anymore. Players/Agents will have to realize that if they want to play/get paid, they're going to have to conform to the slot-system. It is essentially going to going to drive the absurd bunses back down to reasonable levels. Strasburg-type contracts will die. Give it time.
Right, because of the contracts the Nats have handed out in recent years, it's *Strasburg's* that should be called out as "absurd."

I also love the inherent applauding of a system that constrains owners from paying what they think a guy is worth.
   28. MM1f Posted: November 15, 2011 at 12:58 AM (#3993585)
Anecdotally, the list of guys who have had the chance to play pro baseball or another pro sport is almost exclusively made up of guys who chose baseball.


DeSean Jackson
John Elway
Mewelde Moore
Tom Brady
Antwaan Randle-El
Dennis Dixon
ect
   29. Squash Posted: November 15, 2011 at 01:28 AM (#3993599)
The fact that you can finish a baseball career with the ability to walk and without slicing his life expectancy way down seems to register early in life.

And the guaranteed contracts, and that you can start earning when you're 18 (insert college football joke here). And there are a ton more baseball jobs when you include the minors, and the career length is longer, etc. If a player is making his decision based on money, baseball is still easily the best shake. Even deadbeat organizations who you think nobody in their right mind would want to be a part of still manage to sign their two-sport guys.

IMO, in search of the fabled competitive balance, the league either needs to go all the way in and create full salary slots or get out of the process entirely. Otherwise you have some teams spending like drunken sailors and others who want something out of the commissioner's office toeing the line and screwing their fanbase.
   30. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: November 15, 2011 at 01:30 AM (#3993601)
When do we discuss caps on combined front office salaries? Oh no, we couldn't do that. The right kind of people deserve whatever they can negotiate or.
   31. bookbook Posted: November 15, 2011 at 01:57 AM (#3993610)
That is an awesome point. There should be salary caps on front office salaries. And profit caps on owners. Above a certain, reasonable ROI, every red cent should go to the metropolitan area that supports and maintains these teams. I'd love to see that.
   32. RB in NYC (Now Semi-Retired from BBTF) Posted: November 15, 2011 at 01:58 AM (#3993613)
Above a certain, reasonable ROI, every red cent should go to the metropolitan area that supports and maintains these teams. I'd love to see that.
It would be, I suppose.
   33. Robert in Manhattan Beach Posted: November 15, 2011 at 02:03 AM (#3993618)
For Type A non-closer relievers, at least, it most certainly has been an issue. Look at the problems Juan Cruz had finding a new team over the 2009-2010 offseason, for just one example.

Orlando Hudson had issues, too, the last few times he entered FA.


Then fix the system that thinks Juan Cruz and Orlando Hudson are Type A free agents.

The FA compensation system is dumb, but I don't think FA compensation is dumb.

Winner.
   34. bookbook Posted: November 15, 2011 at 02:06 AM (#3993620)
Funny, RB! Any industry with an anti-trust exemption and hundreds of millions of dollars in tax subsidies per stadium can't complain that government needs to just get out of the way and let them make their fair profits off the unfettered
free market.
   35. haven Posted: November 15, 2011 at 02:15 AM (#3993627)
And drive talented two-sport players away from baseball.

Except that other sports have already done this......
   36. Der-K and the statistical werewolves. Posted: November 15, 2011 at 02:34 AM (#3993640)
I'm pretty sure that are US citizens who live in the DR and didn't go thru the draft. It's a risky but worthwhile gamble for a top prospect to consider, I think.
   37. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: November 15, 2011 at 02:39 AM (#3993645)
Then fix the system that thinks Juan Cruz and Orlando Hudson are Type A free agents.


Hark! Is that the sound of moving goalposts that I hear?
   38. Srul Itza Posted: November 15, 2011 at 02:53 AM (#3993652)
How much would I have to pay you to renounce your citizenship?


If you're planning to take up a collection, let me know.
   39. Jim Wisinski Posted: November 15, 2011 at 03:10 AM (#3993657)
Are we assuming that the cap would be the same for all teams? I'm assuming that a team with the first overall pick would have a cap number higher than the team who has their first pick at #28 to account for differences in value. Maybe I'm wrong but that's how the slot recommendations work now so why wouldn't that continue?


You are correct, the cap number would be higher if your slot recommendations are higher.
   40. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: November 15, 2011 at 03:30 AM (#3993662)
That is an awesome point. There should be salary caps on front office salaries.


Heck, what about the league officer? Bolshevik Bud Selig, a man for whom no amount of money is too great to spread around in the stated interests of "fairness" so long as that money originates with someone else, was reported to pull in a whopping $18 million a year. Bud bemoans those fat cat high school kids raking in the long green because they aren't the right sort of people to bestow such riches upon but pay no mind to the windfalls he awards himself, he's not that vulgar new money, after all.
   41. Benji Gil Gamesh Rises Posted: November 15, 2011 at 04:10 AM (#3993676)
Selig: I am shocked, *shocked* to find out that there are millions being made here.

Owners: Your paycheck, sir.

Selig: Oh, thank you very much.
   42. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: November 15, 2011 at 05:10 AM (#3993710)
What is your basis for saying that teams pay "too much" for guys, for saying that their contracts are "absurd"? Its pretty obvious Steven Strasburg, for one, is making less than he is worth.


Well, that depends. They've paid him $12.4 million dollars already, plus those costly surgeries and rehabs, and he's thrown 92 innings for them.

And he's going to reach free agency younger than like any pitcher ever.


Now Brandon Beachy, that guy is underpaid.
   43. MM1f Posted: November 15, 2011 at 05:16 AM (#3993712)
Well, that depends. They've paid him $12.4 million dollars already, plus those costly surgeries and rehabs, and he's thrown 92 innings for them.


And every single team in baseball would pay him twice that if they could.
   44. Robert in Manhattan Beach Posted: November 15, 2011 at 06:05 AM (#3993741)
#37 - Well no, thanks for playing though. The problem is presented as draft pick compensation as hurting the market for all FAs, so the system must be scrapped. Not true. It hurts a few guys who have been misclassified, so the answer is to fix the problem that misclassifies players.

Always enjoy the moving goalposts thing as an excuse for not understanding nuance.
   45. Dr. Vaux Posted: November 15, 2011 at 06:22 AM (#3993746)
And every single team in baseball would pay him twice that if they could.


As part of the total package/future prospects, sure. No team would sign up to pay $25 million for 92 innings and that's it.
   46. MM1f Posted: November 15, 2011 at 06:46 AM (#3993760)
As part of the total package/future prospects, sure. No team would sign up to pay $25 million for 92 innings and that's it.


Ah, I was unclear in my previous post. My point was, every team in baseball would take Strasburg at twice his current deal if they could, even with the injury. Thus, Strasburg is not paid "too much"
   47. cmd600 Posted: November 15, 2011 at 03:18 PM (#3993826)
And he's going to reach free agency younger than like any pitcher ever.


Actually he's not even going to be close. Sabathia was scheduled to hit free agency a few months after turning 25. Strasburg will be two years (pretty much to the day, he was born the day before Sabathia) behind.
   48. Der-K and the statistical werewolves. Posted: November 15, 2011 at 03:28 PM (#3993830)
A-Rod signed his big contract with Texas a few months after turning 25.
   49. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: November 15, 2011 at 03:33 PM (#3993831)
#37 - Well no, thanks for playing though. The problem is presented as draft pick compensation as hurting the market for all FAs, so the system must be scrapped. Not true. It hurts a few guys who have been misclassified, so the answer is to fix the problem that misclassifies players.

Always enjoy the moving goalposts thing as an excuse for not understanding nuance.


Boras said: "In recent years, teams have become increasingly reluctant to sign free agents tied to first-round draft picks, which has impacted the market for those players."

You said: "Well, no, but we thank Mr. Boras for contributing this talking point."

I then provided several examples of Type A free agents whose status on the FA market was, in fact, damaged by their Type A status.

The question of whether players like Cruz and Hudson should have been Type A free agents is an entirely separate issue. Under the rules of the old agreement, as written, they received that classification, and therefore Olney's remarks regarding them were correct.

You were wrong. The thing that you said was demonstrably incorrect. If you intended to say something else (i.e. "these changes are not the optimal solution"), you should have been more careful in writing your post, and not said something that you didn't mean.

Similarly, you are wrong when you say that "the problem is presented as draft pick compensation as hurting the market for all FAs". Re-examine the Olney quote in question. Nowhere does he say what you are accusing him of saying. In fact, he says nothing at all about the current scope of the problem, merely offering the opinion that it is "increasing".

This is not a matter of nuance. It is a matter of accuracy. If you believe that nuance supports your position, it is only because you are not paying attention to the facts in evidence.
   50. Dan Szymborski Posted: November 15, 2011 at 03:44 PM (#3993837)
Good changes. After all, you know something is horribly out of whack when years of control of the most hyped prospect in a long time gets so much money that it could've paid Vernon Wells for 4 months.
   51. Nasty Nate Posted: November 15, 2011 at 03:48 PM (#3993840)
I agree w/ #49
   52. John Northey Posted: November 15, 2011 at 07:35 PM (#3994094)
What I expect to happen is a lot of prospects hoping to be drafted in rounds 11-50 instead of 1-10. So tons of 'I won't sign, going to college' to an even stronger degree than now hoping that a team with lots of cash waits until round 11 to draft him. If they make the draft international (ie: all players from all countries) then suddenly round 11 could see some very good players and smart teams will draft non-entities for round 10 hoping to get that ideal guy in the 11th.

Unless, of course, they put a limit on rounds 11-50 as well.
   53. Der-K and the statistical werewolves. Posted: November 17, 2011 at 03:45 AM (#3995370)
Per Melissa Segura (and others) - a cap (and floor) on international spending may be part of this as well - with cap #s in the 2-2.5M range being floated.
Here's an article (in Spanish) that gets into possible repercussions. (mostly bad for transparency)

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