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Oakland A’s sign 1st-round draft pick Tyler Soderstrom

High school catcher signs for over-slot bonus

2019 PDP League Media Day Photo by Mike Carlson/MLB Photos via Getty Images

The 2020 MLB draft is in the books, so the next step is for the Oakland A’s to sign the players they selected. They took care of the biggest one on Monday by signing 1st-round pick Tyler Soderstrom, reports insider Jim Callis.

As expected from previous reports, Soderstrom signed for $3.3 million. That’s a notably over-slot bonus, as his slot value for the No. 26 overall pick stood at $2,653,400. That heavy expenditure makes sense for a top prep talent who had a commitment to a major university (UCLA).

Soderstrom will join the A’s 60-man player pool, and report to the team’s alternate training camp, which is functionally replacing the minor leagues this season. That doesn’t mean we’ll see him in the majors this year nor anytime soon at all, just that he’ll be allowed to participate with the team this summer and continue his development around more experienced prospects and coaches.

With Soderstrom locked in, Oakland has now signed four of their five picks from the abbreviated 2020 draft. Here’s where the A’s bonus pool stands right now.

Oakland A's 2020 draft: Signing bonuses
Rd Name Pos $Slot $Sign $Diff
1 Tyler Soderstrom C 2,653,400 3,300,000 +646,600
2 Jeff Criswell RHP 1,214,300 1,000,000 (-214,300)
3 Michael Guldberg OF 593,100 300,000 (-293,100)
4 Dane Acker RHP 447,400 447,400 0
5 Stevie Emanuels RHP 333,300 -- --
- Subotal (so far) - 4,908,200 5,047,400 +139,200
- Total - 5,241,500 5,047,400 (-194,100)
- Maximum (+5%) - 5,503,575 5,047,400 (-456,175)

Teams can exceed their pools by up to 5% before incurring serious penalties like losing future picks. Therefore, Oakland can exceed their pool by up to $262,075, for a total of $5,503,575.

The A’s have one draftee yet to sign, 5th-round pitcher Stevie Emanuels, and they have plenty of room left for him. They can still spend up to $456,175 and finish under the maximum soft-cap, while Emanuels’ slot value stands well below that at $333,300, meaning they could even go over-slot on him and still be fine.

UPDATE: All of this financial info went out of date within 15 minutes of the publishing of this article, as Emanuels also signed Monday. Click here to see the new, complete version.

As a reminder, here’s the full 2020 draft class, including five undrafted free agents who signed for up to $20,000 each and don’t count against the bonus pool. Click each player’s name for more info about him. So far, among the undrafted prospects, the A’s have only officially announced the signing of Simoneit.

  1. Round 1: Tyler Soderstrom, C, high school (CA)
  2. Round 2: Jeff Criswell, RHP, Michigan
  3. Round 3: Michael Guldberg, OF, Georgia Tech
  4. Round 4: Dane Acker, RHP, Oklahoma
  5. Round 5: Stevie Emanuels, RHP, Washington

Welcome to the newest Oakland A’s!