It's tough to lose. Even when you know your team is likely to lose, as the now gutted and injured 2012 Red Sox are, it still stings a bit to see them finish up with an L, especially against a division rival like the Rays. The thing is, one way to improve Boston going forward is to lose now. Their draft position will be better for it, and while there might not be a huge difference the further back you get in the draft, it's top 10 picks that tend to produce.
WEEI's Alex Speier is here to remind us of that today. In essence, a few important points to remember:
- Only the top 10 picks in the draft are protected, and since the Pirates are going to have the #9 pick thanks to their failure to sign Mark Appel in 2012, only the nine-worst records will be in the top 10.
- A protected top-10 pick means signing a player who has been extended a qualifying offer -- the new way to receive compensatory picks now that the Elias Rankings have been abolished under the new collective bargaining agreement -- will result in the loss of a second-round selection, rather than the first.
- Losing a second-round pick isn't great, either, but as research has shown, there's plenty of value in giving up that kind of pick for the right kind of player.
- Losing a first-round pick represents a more significant loss of draft budget space, as earlier picks are worth more, thanks to the higher suggested slot values.