The Competitive Balance Lottery was held Wednesday, and the Padres were awarded an additional pick in the 2015 MLB draft. In addition to their usual first and second round picks, San Diego will also have the 35th overall pick.
The Competitive Balance Lottery was introduced two years ago, in order to help small market or low revenue teams by giving them additional high draft picks. It adds two additional short rounds to the draft. Competitive Balance Round A occurs after the first round of the draft and Round B takes place after the second round.
Teams in the 10 smallest markets and teams with one of the 10 smallest revenue pools are eligible for the lottery. Any other team that receives money from the revenue-sharing plan is eligible for the second round. This year, a total of 12 teams fell into those categories. Six teams received selections in Round A, and the other six teams received draft picks in Round B. The Padres finished fifth in the lottery, earning them the 5th pick in the Round A.
The Competitive Balance picks are unique in that they can be traded. No other draft picks are tradable.
The Padres currently have the 24th best record in baseball. If they remain there through the rest of the season, they will draw the 7th pick in the 2015 draft. With this additional selection, they will also have the 35th pick, and have the 43rd pick as their regular pick in the second round.
For some perspective, some other players drafted in that 35th – 42nd pick range recently include Taylor Lindsey, whom the Padres just picked up in the Huston Street trade, D-Backs shortstop Chris Owings, and Angels’ pitcher Garrett Richards. Carlos Quentin was a number 29 pick. Tyson Ross was picked at number 58 in the 2008 draft.
The baseball draft is a numbers game. While there is no guarantee that a high draft pick will translate into a productive major league player, the more picks a team gets from among the most talented amateurs, the better the likelihood that they’ll get some future big leaguers. With three top 50 picks next year, the Padres are increasing their odds of being a better team five years down the road.