Allan Simpson

Draft Dish: March 1

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The first month of the 2006 college season only served to reaffirm what scouting directors already knew—that this year's draft will be dominated by college pitching.

Draft | #2006

2006 Early Draft Preview

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The 2006 draft is shaping up with few potential headline players, one in which the high-end talent has been more difficult to identify or quantify than in most years.

Draft | #2006

Juco Jamboree: Top 25 Prospects

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Here's how Baseball America's Allan Simpson sees the nation's top 25 junior college prospects for the 2006 draft. For players that were drafted in 2005 and remain under control, the team that drafted them (and the round) is noted. Such players will be eligible to sign after their 2006 season is complete until the closed period—a week before the draft. They will re-enter this year's draft if they don't sign.

Draft | #2005#Early Draft Preview

2006 Early Draft Preview

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There are no Delmon Youngs or Justin Uptons in this year's high school class. There are also few marquee high school selections from three years ago who went unsigned then and might have resurfaced to beef up this year's college crop. As a result, the 2006 draft is shaping up with few potential headline players, one in which the high-end talent has been more difficult to identify or quantify than in most years.

Draft | #2006#Early Draft Preview

Signing Bonuses Year-By-Year

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Signing bonuses have grown exponentially since 1965, when the draft was instituted ostensibly to . . . curtail the growth of signing bonuses. From a first-round average of less than $50,000 in the first several years of the draft, the average bonus grew to more than $2 million a few years ago before leveling off and actually declining. Following is a year-by-year breakdown of average first-round signing bonuses, the annual percentage change, the first overall pick in the June regular phase and his bonus, and the player who received the largest bonus (if other from the No. 1 pick), as compiled by BA founding editor Allan Simpson. The signing bonus average for first-round picks from 1965-82 includes the value of college scholarship plans and incentive bonus plans, in addition to the cash bonus paid. From 1983-2004, the amount represents only the cash bonus paid.

Draft | #2005#Draft Preview

Bonus Concerns Created Draft; Yet Still Exist

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Two weeks before the 2000 draft, Sandy Alderson, then Major League Baseball's executive vice president of baseball operations, called a meeting of scouting directors in Dallas. Disturbed with the runaway inflation of signing bonuses in the 1990s, he sought to curtail the game's age-old problem of reckless spending on untried amateur players.

Draft | #2005#Draft Preview

2005 Draft Scouting Reports: West Virginia

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West Virginia enjoyed some success on the national stage this spring when West Virginia State advanced to the Division II World Series and Potomac State made its second straight appearance at the Junior College World Series. Winthrop outfielder Daniel Carte, a West Virginia native who is the state's high school career home run leader, is a potential first-round pick. But that's as close as it will get in the draft as the state won't have any other players with West Virginia connections go in the first 10 rounds.

Draft | #2005#Draft Preview

2005 Draft Scouting Reports: Pennsylvannia

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This has not been a vintage year for Pennsylvania, especially in the western half of the state. After producing premium first-rounders Chris Lubanski (Royals, 11th overall) in 2003 and Neil Walker (Pirates, 11th) in 2004, there may not be a Pennsylvania player among the draft's top 100 picks this year.

Draft | #2005#Draft Preview

2005 Draft Scouting Reports: New York

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Led by the dynamic pitching duo of Craig Hansen and Anthony Varvaro at St. John's, New York has an unusually deep crop of college pitchers this year. If he goes in the first round, as expected, Hansen would be the first player drafted in the first round out of a New York college or high school since 1996.

Draft | #2005#Draft Preview

2005 Draft Scouting Reports: New Jersey

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New Jersey has been a tough state for scouts to get a read on this spring. There were three premium high school arms all along, but the pecking order changed continually until righthander Vince Mazzaro, the most signable of the trio, made a late charge. Some scouts saw Princeton multisport star Will Venable as a better athlete and better baseball prospect than B.J. Szymanski, Princeton's two-sport star from 2004 who went in the second round to the Reds, while others see him as no better than the surprise 15th-rounder he was a year ago.

Draft | #2005#Draft Preview

2005 Draft Scouting Reports: Upper New England

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A year after Maine high school righthander Mark Rogers, selected fifth overall by the Brewers, became the highest pick in draft history from this three-state region's prep ranks, things have returned to normal. With the possibility of one or two players slipping into the first 10 rounds, crosscheckers had little reason to trek to the northeast corner of the country this spring.

Draft | #2005#Draft Preview