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And as expected, the Rays failed to reach an agreement with their top draft pick, LeVon Washington, a Scott Boras client. [MLB Trade Rumors]

The Rays also failed to sign their second-round pick, Kenny Dierkroeger. In fact Marc Lancaster reports that salary figures were never even exchanged…Dierkroeger did seem adamant about going to college after the draft. [Rays Report]

With the Rays failing to sign either of their top 2 picks, they will receive 2 compensation picks in next year’s draft. The picks will be the equivalent of this year’s pick plus one. So next year, the Rays will have their normal pick (something in the mid-20s) and a compensation pick at #31. In addition, they will receive a compensation pick at #79. Therefore the Rays will have at least 4 picks in the first two rounds next season.

In year’s past, you would have been more likely to see the Rays stretch for a prospect they knew would be hard to sign in the third round (the Rays failed to sign their 3rd round picks in ’05 and ’06). But with the compensation system in place now for the top two rounds, it makes much more sense to reach in the second round, knowing the team can always “try again” next year with the compensation pick.

DEVIL DOGS WEBTOPIA

  • The final tally for the Rays was that they signed 32 of 50 draft picks and 15 of the top 20. [Rays Prospects]
  • Rays Prospects offers their reaction to the draft, saying the failure to sign the top two picks “hurts”. [Rays Prospects]
  • The Rays Party noticed that Dioner Navarro has altered his swing a bit…On a side note, it looks like Gregg Zaun has taken Navi under his wing. Check out those high socks. BEAUTIFUL! [The Rays Party]
  • Joe Smith wrote a neat piece on the Rays’ newest reliever, Russ Springer, and his son. [St. Pete Times]
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14 Comments

  1. bobrittner says:

    The problem with compensation picks is that they are not protected next year so the advantage in negotiations swings to them a bit. If we do not sign them next year, there is no further compensation in 2011. And of course we lose a year of development time unless those picks are college seniors. On the other hand, if 2010 is a deep class the Rays may make out better by getting 4 earlier picks then rather than 2 this year.

    I am thrilled that the Rays got Bailey and think the Glaesmann and Malm signings were huge pluses as well. But it is disappointing that Washington did not sign-and surprising. Diekroeger was always a reach, worthwhile to try but unlikely to sign. A few of the lower signings were also good, particularly James at #9 who got a bigger bonus than picks 6-8.

    Still, it would have been nice to get Dennis, Johnson or Floro if we were not able to get #1-2. I think the Rays' plan in the first draft they did not have a top 10 pick was to select high ceiling talent that dropped in the draft for various reasons (injury, signability) and work to improve the system's depth rather than worry about signing their top pick who was unlikely to be a major talent in any case. They seem to have partially succeeded as #3-5 were certainly considered 1st or 2nd round talents and a few of the lower round signings were also well-regarded, but they also missed on a few gambles like Dennis and Maddux.

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    • it is true that the compensation picks are not protected, but I would think if the Rays are targeting 2 picks in the first round, they would try to use the compensation pick on the one more likely to sign.

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  2. Beth says:

    Perhaps those of you more knowledgeable about baseball draft issues can enlighten me, but...I was surprised that the Rays were unable to sign Washington, and I can't help feeling that this young man was not well-advised by his agent.

    He seemed at first eager to sign, and presumably the Rays were offering an attractive signing bonus. Now he heads off to Florida and has to hope that he stays healthy and plays well enough to be a higher first-round pick next time up. I can see that lower round draft picks out of high school might make this choice because their MLB prospects aren't great and there's the potential to do a lot better if you have a few good college years (e.g. Evan Longoria). But if you are a first round pick, you've been offered a multi-million dollar signing bonus, and you are not genuinely enthusiastic about being a college student, choosing not to sign would seem to have many risks with minimal upside. Am I missing something?

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    • bobrittner says:

      I think we have to wait a while to learn the whole story about Washington. It does seem an odd turn of events. Some early rumors suggest he did not take his physical in time and that the Rays were not prepared to up the offer without being more sure of his condition. He had been injured after all.

      Whose fault was that? Did Boras drag his feet? Did the Rays not push hard enough? Something else?

      I have also read rumors that he did not qualify academically for U. of Florida and will attend a junior college instead. If true, I don't think that will improve his draft status, although I suppose if he stars he may move up next time around.

      I don't think he was ever in line to get multi-millions. Probably a bit more than $1 million was the range.

      This link discusses the draft and Washington's situation a bit, although it too is somewhat tentative in its conclusions:

      http://www.raysprospects.com/

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      • Beth says:

        Well, reading the link and your comments leaves me even more convinced that in this case an agent has not necessarily worked in his client's best interests. If you are Levon Washington, how are you feeling now? You could have been cashing a 7-figure check and packing to go to your first minor league assignment. Instead you are sifting through offers from community colleges.

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  3. Don says:

    To S. Boras his % of $1m+ bonus is nothing....
    But a $1M+ bonus, less agent commission, could set up a high school kid for life (invested properly)....the rest of the contract is just icing.... even if he flounders for a few years! If he gets injured(or reinjured) in college baseball.. what is he worth?..What will S Boras care....he will have 10 other clients....
    " Zaun working with Navarro" WHAT! Does he know that Navarro's performance this year determines HIS future (2010 CONTRACT)!!
    Still got to figure this guy out....is he a saint or what!!

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  4. Is the fact that the Rays did not sign their first 2 picks a sign of financial difficulty or perhaps a indication that they will have to trade Carl Crawford in the future?

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  5. Amanda says:

    Garza is scheduled to be interviewed on the Jim Rome Show at 1:30 eastern (620-AM in Tampa). PUH-LEEEEZ let the Jungle Karma come with it!!!!!

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  6. Kevin says:

    JP (MO): Any clue what LeVon Washington will do now? Juco right sounds most likely?
    Jim Callis: Attending a junior college is the most likely choice. A lot of the reaction I've heard from fans is that Washington was a big loser yesterday, not signing with the Rays and not being able to get into Florida. I don't know about that. If his shoulder is fully healthy and he plays to his capabilities, he could be one of the first JC/college position players taken next year and get more money than he would have this year.

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  7. Rayhawk says:

    Is there anyway that MLB will adopt a this is your first yr salary, every rookie starts the same, instead of paying them on what MIGHT be their potential?

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    • Amanda says:

      The NHL finally went to that, but it took the entire league to almost collapse for it to happen.

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  8. Rayhawk says:

    And your point is? LOL

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