While most baseball fans are keyed in on the pennant races, here at Baseball America we're keeping tabs on how the top of the draft is shaping up next year. With a record of 51-98 heading into Friday's game, the Astros have all but locked up the top pick. After that, though, it's a lot closer. Let's take a look at the bottom 10 teams in the standings.
|HOUSTON ASTROS||51-98 (.342)||—|
Remaining schedule: 3 @ CHC (.433), 3 @ CIN (.493), 4 vs. COL (.470) and 3 vs. STL (.544)
While they haven't officially clinched, the Astros have a "tragic" number of six for the top choice in next year's draft. The last time the Astros had the first-overall selection was in 1992 when the team picked third baseman Phil Nevin from Cal State Fullerton, over Derek Jeter.
|MINNESOTA TWINS||59-89 (.399)||8.5|
Remaining schedule: 3 vs. CLE (.490), 1 @ NYY (.608), 3 vs. SEA (.416), 4 @ CLE (.490) and 3 vs. KC (.430)
The Twins, who are 1-9 in their last 10 games, haven't had a first-overall pick since 2001 when they chose hometown catcher Joe Mauer. That was a year after the team's last second-overall pick of righthander Adam Johnson from Cal State Fullerton.
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This story had Stanek's birthday reported incorrectly previously. Baseball America regrets the error.
Major League Baseball has announced its 2012 schedule, and the press release also announces the dates of the 2012 draft: June 4-6.
Those dates have good news and bad news for Arkansas. They make the Razorbacks' sophomore righthander Ryne Stanek ineligible for the draft, but righthander Nolan Sanburn is an eligible sophomore. Stanek was born July 26, 1991, while Sanburn was born July 21, 1991, which is 45 days from the end of the draft on June 6. According to Major League Baseball, in an email sent to the clubs, "A player must become eligible to sign on or before JULY 21, 2011 (emphasis theirs) to be subject to selection."
If MLB calculated the date from the start of the draft, or if the draft lasted just two days instead of three, Sanburn would have to wait until 2013 to be eligible. Instead, the No. 1 prospect in the Northwoods League will be eligible in 2012. Sanburn went 2-4, 3.62 with eight saves and 35 strikeouts in 32 innings.
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