Yesterday was the deadline for teams to offer arbitration to their ranking free agents, and 35 players received arbitration offers, which means there will be at most, 35 compensation picks. Players have until next Tuesday (November 30th) at midnight to accept or decline those arbitration offers, and any player that does decline an arbitration offer nets his former team compensation picks (assuming he signs a major league deal with a new team).
The first round of the 2011 draft has 33 picks. There will be 35 additional compensation picks, at most, since 35 players were offered arbitration. Keep in mind that Type A players net their former team two compensation picks, but one of those picks is already accounted for, as the former team would take the signing team’s existing first or second round pick. That brings the total number of picks in the first round, and the compensation round, to 68.
The Pirates have the first pick in the second round, which means their second round pick will be no later than 69th overall. That number can go down if ranking free agents accept arbitration, re-sign with their former teams, retire, or sign a minor league deal. For reference, the first pick in the second round over the last few years has been at the following spot:
It’s likely that the first pick in the second round during the 2011 draft will be similar to the same pick in 2007, in the mid-60 range. The increased amount of compensation picks (12 more players were offered arbitration compared to last year) devalues the Pirates’ second round pick. They are less likely to land a repeat of Stetson Allie or even Tanner Scheppers. That could be why the Pirates are reportedly so aggressive in pursing Type A free agent Jorge De La Rosa, who would cost them that second round pick. They aren’t a guarantee to land De La Rosa, but if they did, forfeiting the 69th overall pick isn’t as bad as forfeiting a pick near the top 50.
If the Pirates did sign a Type A free agent, and lost their second round pick, their second overall pick would be in the third round. The latest that their third round pick would be is 101st overall.