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2017 Oakland A’s Draft Preview

GM David Forst (right)
Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

The 2017 MLB Draft is upon us! The proceedings begin today (Monday) at 4:00 p.m. PT, televised on MLB Network. Here’s everything you need to know!

The Basics

The draft is split up into three days, with this first day being by far the highlight.

Day 1 (Mon): Rounds 1 & 2, Comp Rounds A & B
Day 2 (Tue): Rounds 3-10
Day 3 (Wed): Rounds 11-40

Monday brings, in this order: Round 1, Comp Round A, Round 2, and Comp Round B. The A’s got one of the competitive balance picks this year, so they have an extra selection in Comp Round A. Here is where they will pick on Monday:

Round 1: No. 6
Comp A: No. 33
Round 2: No. 43

There will be 75 picks total on Monday, so on Tuesday the A’s will get No. 81, No. 111, etc.

Click here for full draft order.

Bonus Pool

Each pick through Round 10 holds a recommended “slot value” for how big of a contract the team should give the player. The sum of all of these slot values equals the team’s bonus pool that they’re allowed to use to sign their entire draft class, and exceeding that total by more than a smidgen brings harsh penalties.

The A’s hold one of the most valuable picks at the top of the 1st round, plus that extra Comp Round pick, so their bonus pool is the fifth-highest in the draft at $11,407,500. Of that total, $5.3 million is recommended to go toward their top pick at No. 6 overall, though it’s up to them how they distribute their pool money.

This is relevant because it can somehow affect a team’s drafting strategy. If we see the A’s settle on an underwhelming target in the 1st round, it could be because they have their eyes on a couple players who slip to later rounds due to monetary demands — which the A’s could be able to meet if they saved money on their top pick. It’s all a balancing act based on what specific talent is available and how the team thinks it can gain the most value.

Click here for full bonus pool info.

Who might the A’s take in the 1st round?

Here’s a list of top prospects who could be on the A’s radar with that No. 6 overall pick. They are listed in order of their rankings on MLB Pipeline, and you can click the links after their names to see our writeups of them (HS for high school, CO for college):

  • LHP MacKenzie Gore (HS) (link)
  • SS/OF Royce Lewis (HS) (link)
  • OF Jeren Kendall (CO) (link)
  • RHP J.B. Bukauskas (CO) (link)
  • 1B Pavin Smith (CO) (link 1) (link 2)
  • OF Austin Beck (HS) (link)
  • OF Adam Haseley (CO) (link 1) (link 2)
  • 2B/LF Keston Hiura (CO) (link)
  • 1B Brent Rooker (CO) (link)

Quick breakdown: Athletics Nation especially likes Gore, Beck, Lewis, and Bukauskas, with Haseley and Rooker as interesting sleeper options. However, Smith and Kendall are not popular targets at AN. Another name we didn’t discuss was RHP Alex Faedo, a product of the same Florida Gators team that has provided Oakland’s last two 1st-round picks (Richie Martin, A.J. Puk).

For full scouting reports on all draft prospects, click here for MLB Pipeline or here for John Sickels of Minor League Ball.

Check back after 4:00 to see which top prospect the A’s ended up with!

2017 MLB Draft Day 1 Coverage

Date: Monday, June 12

Time: Preview show 6 p.m. / Draft Coverage 7 p.m.

TV: MLB Network