MLB Draft shortened to five rounds

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Adapt and overcome has been the collective attitude of the sports world ever since the start of the coronavirus pandemic, but some of the changes that come with that attitude create brand new challenges to overcome.

Take the MLB Draft for instance, normally a 40 round process with more than 1,200 selections now a shell of its former self.

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After weeks of speculation, Major League Baseball has officially shortened its amateur draft to just five rounds in a deal agreed upon by the Players Association as first reported by ESPN and The Athletic.

That’s an 87 percent reduction in overall picks which makes for the shortest draft in the sport’s history.

Teams will then be able to sign for an unlimited amount of undrafted free agents for a maximum of $20,000.

The final decision was made after the union rejected a ten round proposal, saving team owners nearly $30 million in bonuses.

For example, a player selected in the 10th round of last year’s draft had a slot value of more than $142,000.

Also for example, a player selected in the 10th round of last year’s draft is West Harrison and MGCCC alum Brandon Parker who has a lot of empathy for those deserving to be in his shoes. “It stinks. It really does. But that was one of the best things about going JUCO, I mean I could’ve gotten drafted after my first or second year. But again man, cause that was my dream, that was my dream since I was a little kid to get drafted and like you said I was a 10th round draft pick, and this year it’s only going to five rounds so I don’t know. I don’t know, man. I just hate it for all the guys that are high school and out of JUCO that have been there four years in high school or have been there two years in JUCO and was expecting to get drafted that didn’t. I hate it for them. I really do.”

This year’s draft will reportedly take place from June 10th to the 11th with 150 overall picks.

The current Major League season has still yet to begin due to the ongoing public health crisis.

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A native of Pass Christian and a St. Stanislaus alum, Jeff Haeger comes to News 25 from right in our backyard. He most recently spent more than three years working as the sports reporter for WHLT-TV in Hattiesburg, where he provided extensive coverage of his alma mater, The University of Southern Mississippi. At Southern Miss, Jeff was a member of the Honors College and graduated with a B.A. degree in Broadcast Journalism with a minor in Spanish. He also wrote for USM's award-winning school newspaper, The Student Printz, where he won first place for Best Sports Story in 2013. Jeff loves to travel, and is excited to get back on the water to reunite with his family. In his spare time you can find Jeff spending time with his friends, and maybe even winning a fantasy football league. For sports stories contact Jeff at jhaeger@wxxv25.com.

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