The 2020 MLB Draft will indeed only be five rounds, according to The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal. The draft will be held June 10th, its original start date, and June 11th.
Upon completion of this year’s amateur draft, clubs can sign an unlimited number of undrafted players for a signing bonus of up to $20,000 each.
The five-round draft will be the shortest in the sport’s history, and as The Athletic’s Jayson Stark notes, that means that over 1,000 draft-eligible prospects who thought they were going to be drafted as recently as January won’t.
That being the case because under normal circumstances, the draft would be 40 rounds. However, due to the pandemic-induced shortened 2020 season, Major League Baseball and the MLBPA reached an agreement back in March to shorten the draft from anywhere between 5-10 rounds.
In a proposal sent to the MLBPA from commissioner Rob Manfred’s office earlier in the week, a 10-round draft would come “with other trade-offs that the Players Association determined were too restrictive, including slot amounts in rounds 6-10 at half their 2019 values and a limit of five undrafted players who could sign for a $20,000.” The union rejected the proposal.
If their had been five additional rounds in this year’s draft, the slot values of those rounds would have only come out to approximately $29,578,100, per ESPN’s Jeff Passan. In other words, less than $1 million per club, which has disappointed many across the game.
The Red Sox this year will make their first selection in this year’s draft with the 17th overall pick. That pick will have a slot value of $3,609,700.
Boston will be without a second-round pick as part of their punishment for stealing signs in 2018, but here are the rest of the slot values for the club’s third, fourth, and fifth-round picks, courtesy of Baseball America.
Round 3, 89th overall: $667,900
Round 4, 118th overall: $487,900
Round 5, 148th overall: $364,400
Again, the 2020 MLB Draft will begin on June 10th, and it will be held virtually, presumably on MLB Network.