Monday, August 17, 2009

Doesn't Look Like Washington Will Sign

Or Diekroeger. From a press release(h/t DRaysBay):

ST. PETERSBURG, FLA. -The Tampa Bay Rays announced today that the organization does not expect to reach agreement with its first- and second-round picks from the 2009 June First-Year Player Draft before tonight's midnight EST deadline. The Rays would receive equivalent draft picks in the 2010 June First-Year Player Draft if these players do not sign.

The Rays selected outfielder LeVon Washington with the 30th pick in the first round and infielder Kenneth (Kenny) Diekroeger with the 29th pick of the second round, 78th overall.

"We are disappointed that LeVon has chosen not to sign with the Rays," said Andrew Friedman, Rays Executive Vice President of Baseball Operations. "We offered him a bonus consistent with late-first-round picks. Immediately following the draft, he seemed eager to sign but it has not materialized. We wish LeVon great success with his baseball career."

Washington, 18, hit .400 (34-for-85) this Spring with seven home runs, 14 stolen bases, 19 RBI, four doubles, one triple, and 32 runs scored at Buchholz High School in Gainesville, Fla. Baseball America ranked him as the No. 2 "fastest runner" among high school players entering the draft. Baseball America also rated him the No. 29 prospect entering the draft, and the No. 9 center fielder.

Diekroeger, 18, attended Menlo High School in Atherton, Calif., where he hit .586 (34-for-58) with four home runs and 20 RBI during his senior year. He was the highest-drafted player ever out of Menlo High.

"When we drafted Kenny, we went in with our eyes wide open, knowing he had a strong desire to attend Stanford University," Friedman said. "We knew that we would either be signing a top talent or receiving a comparable pick in the 2010 draft. We wish Kenny all the best at Stanford."

The Rays have signed 32 of their 50 selections from Draft, including 15 of their first 20.

The only way this is saved is if the team uses the money that Washington turned down to get Pierce Johnson or Dylan Floro. They'll get compensation picks for Washington and Diekroeger, but quite frankly it's inexcusable to not sign your top two picks.


  1. This is bs. How did this happen? We better get Dennis and BOTH of Floro and Johnson.

  2. I wouldn't count on it at all. Johnathan Mayo says Dennis/Johnson aren't signing. I have work in a little bit and we'll see how things play out, but I'll have a big post on everything late tonight or tomorrow.


    I guess we aim for Floro now

  4. I really didnt even want Washington.Now Diekroger yeah I wanted him.But I guess we must settle for picks next year.This draft still wasen't a fail.Malm,Bailey,Glaesmann,and others is not a fail.

  5. I guess it's understandable, 1st pick changes mind, 2nd was a risk to begin with. And you get essentially the same picks next year.

    But, those picks are a year later in development (unless they are college guys), and the Rays have less leverage with the comp picks next year. The players/agents know if the Rays fail to sign the comp picks, they lose them for good. (No comp pick for a comp pick.)

    The loss of leverage bothers me the most.

  6. Another thing, now the Rays 2010 draft budget has to include all the regular picks PLUS money for and extra 1st and an extra 2nd.

    Can they afford that? Will it mean less money spent on offseason free agents? Will it hinder contract extensions on current players? The money has to come from somewhere...

  7. As I understand it, the Rays spent more money than usual this year in Latin America because they knew they wouldn't be spending as much on the draft, as they didn't have a top-5 pick. I would assume that they can easily allocate more money to the draft and less to Latin America next year because of the two comp picks. Even with that, assuming their amateur signing budget hasn't changed, they will still be able to spend more in Latin America than they did until this year.

  8. Do the Rays actually think it will be cheaper next year with having 4 picks in the first 2 rounds?

  9. That's what I can't figure out. They're going to end up drafting below-slot surefire signees(Will Kline, anyone?) and maybe not go over-slot in the next few rounds like they did this year