It’s just about a week from MLB draft day, and that means the picture on how this year’s prospects stack up is really starting to come into focus. Below you’ll find my ranking of the top 150 players for the shortened five-round MLB draft starting June 10.
This is not a prediction of where I think players will go, you can find that in my latest mock draft, and I expand on some of the factors involved in this list in my initial ranking of this year’s draft class. Lastly, I’ve included Future Value grades (FV) for each prospect so you can see where he would rank on a Top 100 or on a team prospect list.
Family of Dodgers’ Andrew Toles just glad he’s alive
The family of Los Angeles Dodgers outfielder Andrew Toles was glad that he was arrested last week because that meant they knew where he was.
Toles, who has struggled with mental illness, was charged in Key West, Florida, with trespassing property after he was found sleeping behind a Federal Express building at the airport and refused to move.
“When the news came out, the response from the public was very different from the response from my family,” Morgan Toles, Andrew’s sister, told USA Today. “When people saw my brother’s mug shot, it was like, ‘Oh, my God! He’s been arrested.’
“You know what my family felt? Relief. It’s really crazy to say, but the mug shot, really, was the best thing ever. We didn’t know whether he was dead or alive.”
Toles, 28, rose from the low minors to the majors in just months and became a postseason star for the Dodgers in 2016.
He was the starting left fielder in the second half of 2016 and early in 2017. In May of that year, he tore a knee ligament and spent most of 2018 at Triple-A Oklahoma City.
Toles never reported to spring training in 2019 because of a personal matter. He did not play that year. His family told USA Today that he has been in at least 20 mental health facilities since 2019. He is currently in a Key West hospital and has a court date Thursday, according to his sister.
“Honestly, I don’t expect him to show up,” Morgan Toles told the newspaper. “He’s probably not even aware. They’re holding him in a hospital because he’s so incoherent and will give him medication until he gets through it. But after that, and he’s able to verbalize he wants out, he can leave when he seems fit.”
Toles’ family has tried to gain guardianship of him to get him into a mental health facility for a stay long enough to help him. Toles has resisted and bolts every facility after a brief stay. According to USA Today, he has enough money from his playing days to fly and stay in hotels. But he also ends up in shelters and on the street.
Toles had struggled with anxiety issues even before the Dodgers signed him to a minor league contract. He was the Tampa Bay Rays‘ minor league player of the year in 2013 but was released in 2015. He was working the early-morning shift in the frozen food section of a grocery store before the Dodgers recruited him.
“It’s heartbreaking, literally heartbreaking,” Dodgers president Andrew Friedman told USA Today. “I have a long history with Andrew, and I just wish there was something more we could do to help.”
Friedman drafted Toles when he was in the Rays organization. Dodgers teammate Justin Turner has offered to pay Toles’ medical bills. But they need him not to run.
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.
Jail records show Toles appeared to be homeless when arrested Monday on the misdemeanor charge. His bond was set at $500 and records on Saturday showed that Toles is no longer a current inmate at Monroe County jail. He is scheduled for arraignment Thursday.
“We are unable to comment,” team spokesman Joe Jareck said Saturday.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
It’s Bobby Bonilla Day! Why Mets pay him $1.19 million today and every July 1
The calendar has turned to July 1, and that means one thing: It’s time for Mets fans everywhere to wish each other a Happy Bobby Bonilla Day! Why? On Wednesday, 57-year-old Bobby Bonilla will collect a check for $1,193,248.20 from the New York Mets, as he has and will every July 1 from 2011 through 2035.
Because of baseball’s salary structure, Bonilla’s annual payday is often more than some of the game’s current stars in a given year. Thanks to the shortened season and prorated salaries for players in 2020, that list has grown even longer.
So why does Bonilla get this payday?
In 2000, the Mets agreed to buy out the remaining $5.9 million on Bonilla’s contract.
However, instead of paying Bonilla the $5.9 million at the time, the Mets agreed to make annual payments of nearly $1.2 million for 25 years starting July 1, 2011, including a negotiated 8% interest.
At the time, Mets ownership was invested in a Bernie Madoff account that promised double-digit returns over the course of the deal, and the Mets were poised to make a significant profit if the Madoff account delivered. It did not.
How rare is this arrangement?
Bonilla last played for the Mets in 1999 and last played in the majors for the Cardinals in 2001, but he will be paid through 2035 (when he’ll be 72).
Other notable examples of deferred-money contracts:
• Bobby Bonilla (again): A second deferred-contract plan with the Mets and Orioles pays him $500,000 a year for 25 years. Those payments began in 2004.
• Bret Saberhagen: Saberhagen will receive $250,000 a year from the Mets for 25 years (payments also began in 2004; this was the inspiration for Bonilla’s deal).
• Max Scherzer: Will receive $105 million total from the Nationals that will be paid out through 2028.
• Manny Ramírez: Will collect $24.2 million total from the Red Sox through 2026.
• Bruce Sutter: Signed a deal with the Braves before the 1985 season with deferred money. He was to be paid $750,000 per year while with the Braves, then for 30 years after he retired, he’d receive at least $1.12 million per year. The Braves will be paying him through 2020. He received the $750,000 figure in 1989 and 1990 because he retired with two years left on the six-year deal, so his 30 years of the other installments didn’t begin until 1991.
How this compares to 2020 shortened-season salaries
Besides young players who start their careers earning about half of Bonilla’s annual $1.19 million, here are some notable players who will be making less than Bonilla’s $1.19 million strictly because the season is only 60 games in 2020 because of prorated salaries, courtesy of ESPN’s Stats & Information’s Harrison Marder.
Dansby Swanson — $3.15 million prior to prorated salaries. Will make approximately $1,165,500
Kenta Maeda — $3.125 million prior to prorated salaries. Will make approximately $1,156,250
Byron Buxton — $3.075 million prior to prorated salaries. Will make approximately $1,137,750
Mitch Moreland — $3 million prior to prorated salaries. Will make approximately $1,110,000
Michael Wacha — $3 million prior to prorated salaries. Will make approximately $1,110,000
Hunter Pence — $3 million prior to prorated salaries. Will make approximately $1,110,000
Michael Fulmer — $2.8 million prior to prorated salaries. Will make approximately $1,036,000
Tommy Kahnle — $2.65 million prior to prorated salaries. Will make approximately $980,500
Gio Urshela — $2.475 million prior to prorated salaries. Will make approximately $915,750
And these players are losing the closest amount to Bonilla’s $1.19 million payday because of the shortened season:
Luke Jackson ($1.825 million prior to prorated salaries). Will make approximately $675,250 in 2020 and will lose approximately $1,149,750
Pedro Strop ($1.825 million prior to prorated salaries). Will make approximately $675,250 and will lose approximately $1,149,750
Tony Wolters ($1.9 million prior to prorated salaries). Will make approximately $703,000 and will lose approximately $1,197,000
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