Last week, Major League Baseball announced which teams were awarded Competitive Balance picks in next summer’s annual amateur draft. These picks are generally awarded to teams that are considered to be near to bottom in terms of market size in order to try and help level the playing field a bit for those who aren’t cash rich like the Yankees or Red Sox. Under the old Competitive Balance system picks were awarded based on a formula that included revenue sharing and winning percentage, but the new system in place simply flips the teams in Round A and Round B each year.
The Milwaukee Brewers held a pick in Competitive Balance Round B in this past summer’s draft, the #73 overall selection, and used it on prep outfielder Micah Bello from Hawaii. That means that during the upcoming draft next June they will be picking in Competitive Balance Round A, which takes place between the first and the second round of the draft (Competitive Balance Round B is set between the second and third rounds). As of right now, the Brewers are tentatively projected for the #39 overall pick, but that could still change based upon where the five Qualifying Offer free agents sign this winter. Notably, the Brewers will be projected to have one of the larger overall draft bonus pools based on owning a Comp Round A pick, assuming that they don’t forfeit any picks by signing a QO free agent during the offseason.
Here is the projected order for both Competitive Balance Rounds:
37. Pirates (compensation for failing to sign 2018 #36 pick Gunnar Hoglund)
The Brewers have held the 39th overall pick two other times in their history and don’t have the strongest track record at that slot. In 1993, they used the selection on Oconto Falls native and Adams Friendship High School alum Joe Wagner. He failed to make it past AA in five seasons as a farmhand for the Brewers and posted a 4.90 ERA in 621.0 minor league innings before washing out. In 2009, Milwaukee selected outfielder Kentrail Davis at #39, a collegiate outfielder from the University of Tennessee. He flashed some tantalizing tools during his minor league days and made it as high as AAA, but wound up hitting .262/.353/.383 with 30 homers and 110 steals in 647 minor league games for the Brewers and later the Angels. He has been out of pro baseball since posting a .585 OPS in AA Arkansas back in 2015.
Statistics courtesy of Baseball-Reference