This is something new to baseball this year and will be for picks in the 2013 draft.
1) The basic premise is MLB is to give away (six) extra picks, lottery style, to six of the 13 smallest market/lowest revenue teams. These picks are at the end of the [first round comp picks]. Teams can only get a total of one extra pick.
2) The seven losers in the first lottery, plus any team who receives revenue sharing (?), will re-enter for a chance for (six) extra [end of 2nd round comp] picks.
3) There is one last lottery for the picks forfeited by teams going over the new bonus pool allotment by 5%. I believe no team did this year, so no third lottery.
All picks gained by any of the three lottery's can be traded (not sold) with several limitations. They can only be traded by the original team (once) and only during the regular season.
What does this all mean for the A's ?
1) The A's have a 45% shot at gaining a post-comp round one pick.
This pick would be high, since there will not be as many comp round one picks as in the past. This is because teams must have offered around 11-12 million per year to the player who left (average of top 125) to get a first round comp pick.
The player also has had to be on that team all year long, so teams trading just for the comp pick later will no longer work. There were 27 sandwich round 1 picks in 2012. I think there could be half or less in 2013. So these 6 picks will start in the #40-45 range.
2) If losing the first lottery, the A's have a chance to get one of the second round comp picks. Again, high pick, as I don't believe there are any more comp second round picks since no more type B. These six picks will start in the #80 range.
So first lottery, 6/13, 45%. Second lottery, the seven teams left added to more teams (?) competing for 6 picks. Individual team odds of winning the top pick are based off last years winning percentage by an unknown process at this point. Actuall percentages would be higher for the worst teams. ? = looks like Detroit is the only other team. So 8 teams for 6 picks or a 75% chance the A's get one of the second round picks if missing on the first.
I really like this for a few reasons.
1) Baseball is doing something to make the playing field more even. It's not much but it's a start and boy does MLB really need to keep working on it. Look at the other major sports and the money disparity is BEYOND a joke in MLB. This could be the start of more types of things like this being done in future years. Even if the A's are no longer in the draft lottery after a move to Brooklyn ten years from now, giving the smaller market teams a small bone is the right thing to do.*
*St. Louis qualifies as small market, but whatever.
2) They get to trade draft picks. The July 31st non-waiver trade deadline and August 31st waiver trade deadline might see some interesting action with some of these picks in the mix.
A team like the A's could trade a Coco Crisp to St.Louis for a comp pick if they don't like other trade options. Or perhaps the A's include in a package their comp pick for a SS/3b to help a playoff run. This is going to be very, very interesting in the coming days, weeks and years as teams work the values out.