Given their ever-shrinking payroll’s impact on their revenue and on-the-small-side market size, the Cincinnati Reds are perennially in the mix for earning Competitive Balance Round draft picks for each edition of the Major League Baseball Draft. Round A is composed of selections after the completion of Round 1, while Round B follows the completion of Round 2, meaning Round A picks carry much, much more value.
The Reds fell into Round A again this year, as MLB Pipeline’s Jonathan Mayo relayed earlier today, and will hold the 7th pick of said round. Considering these are the precious few picks that can be traded away (and that selections overall will fluctuate as players who were given Qualifying Offers begin signing), there’s still a bit of variability when it comes to exactly what number this pick will be overall - that said, it should fall somewhere around 37th-40th overall.
You’ll recall that the Reds landed a compensation pick last draft after Nick Castellanos, who had been given a QO and declined it, signed with Philadelphia. That landed the Reds pick #32 overall between Round 1 and the Comp Round A, bumping down all the pick numbers a bit. That turned into Sal Stewart, and the Reds later selected OF Justin Boyd with pick #73 overall in Competitive Balance Round B. The last time the Reds held a pick in Comp Round A, they took Mat Nelson out of Florida State with pick #35 overall in 2021.
As important as the additional pick comes the bump in pool money, as the higher the Comp pick given, the higher the slot value connected to it. In other words, it’s more overall money for the Reds to use to sign all of their draftees, though which strategy they choose to use in that regard remains to be seen.
The draft...a key way to working through a rebuild!