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The Cubs are actively drafting, Soto wins the derby, Major League Baseball must answer questions and other Cubs bullets

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I know that having the Major League Baseball draft at the same time as the All-Star Game was one of those ideas that sounded good on paper, but in practice it turns out to make you miss out on one thing or the other. And because I’m so focused on the draft, that means I have almost no idea what happened yesterday with all the All-Stars interviews. I need to catch up, like this morning with Wilson Contreras’ comments about the Cubs and his future.

  • Speaking of the draft, we’ll see rounds 11-20 here on Day 3 starting at 1pm PT.
  • Yesterday, the Cubs took seven pitchers and one position player for a total of nine and one in the draft. I wouldn’t take away more from this than that the Cubs felt that pitchers at these points were the best choice to create a successful draft overall (bear in mind, it seems their senior/junior slot signatures are ALWAYS pitchers), and, maybe a little desire right now to make a few moves up the pitcher (there is more positional advantage in the system at this point).
  • Today, the Cubs will add a few positional guys – probably (in their opinion) underrated college bats – and they may have room in the pool to play one or two guys (remember, anything that is more expensive for an individual player $125,000 counts against the pool today and you can definitely get some really interesting leads for $200,000 or so). The Cubs are also likely looking to be active in the undrafted free agent market (where you can now once again spend up to $125,000 per player without counting towards the pool (the dreaded $20,000 limit no longer exists)). The Trade Deadline is also approaching, when the Cubs can get a few more baby bats. Who knows. But, be that as it may, at the moment I don’t really care about the balance of choice. I just don’t think it means much.
  • Instead, what I see in the draft so far is just how HARD RISK the rookies have been. Nearly every election this year – with the exception of pure slot savings – has been on the very brink of high risk and high reward. This is not an accident. It’s clear that the Cubs felt like they already had a lot of quality depth in the farm system, and they were able to take those types of extreme risks to try and get a future superstar. Some years you can’t afford it because you look to the future and you feel like you don’t have enough “probable participants” in your farming system. So you need to take a lot of shots on a high floor. The Cubs DO have a ton of “likely members” in the farm system right now. But they don’t have a ton of “you know, if everything breaks down, this guy could be an ace.” It was a draft to take those hesitation, especially in the earlier rounds, and especially if the Cubs were thinking about this draft—apparently they thought so—that the serve side was underrated.
  • In any case, stay tuned for today’s selections. I bet we’ll see a lot of student bats and a lot of lower risk weapons. It’s harder to get these higher risk, higher return guys to sign on day three if you don’t have a TON of pool space left, and my mental calculation is that the Cubs may only have a small fraction of the excess left. If you missed any of yesterday’s picks, check out the recap here.
  • Last night’s Home Run Derby was fun as always, with Julio Rodriguez stealing the show early (he just beat Homer monster after monster), Albert Pujols shocked everyone (including himself) by defeating Kyle Schwarber in the first round and Juan Soto. eventually taking the crown.
  • It’s a Home Run Derby, so whatever it is, it’s still pretty impressive for Soto that he did what he did in the midst of all the rumors. He’s just good.

  • I tend to think it’s not in the long run go there is a paradigm shift anywhere, especially now that a minor league player’s lawsuit has been settled (although a lawsuit from a handful of minor league teams that have lost their affiliation continues…), but that doesn’t mean there won’t be some interesting information. Meanwhile. These committee questions are likely to be very difficult for MLB and its lawyers to answer. And the fact that the committee dropped him in the middle of a draft and in the middle of MLB trying to negotiate an international draft? This is something out of the ordinary.
  • It’s just amazing stuff:
  • Another tough day in Blackhawks world:


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