Why the new CBA could hurt the Rays
A big buzz word for MLB commissioner Bud Selig today in announcing the new collective bargaining agreement was "competitive balance," and how the new five-year deal will enhance it.
And there are ways the deal helps a team like the Rays, including the addition of a wild card team in each league - beginning possibly next year. There are also extra "competitive balance" picks slotted after the first and second rounds to deserving teams through a lottery.
But one of the most controversial parts of this deal revolves around something that is the heart and soul of the Rays organization - the draft. According to the new CBA, there will be an aggregate pool of money each team is allowed to spend on signing bonuses for draft picks in the first 10 rounds. If a team goes over that amount of money, they'll be taxed/fined or lose draft picks, which is a heavy price to pay.
That holds true especially for small market teams like the Rays, who build through the draft, and are one of the biggest spenders when it comes to that. The Rays, like many, pay over-slot to players to try to get them to sign, and now with the new system, it means even less margin for error for Tampa Bay.
There is also a spending cap on international signings. With the Rays being among the forefront of teams when it comes to international scoutings, this could also be a hindrance for Tampa Bay.
Rays president Matt Silverman said in a statement today that they need time to "read and digest" the new CBA before discussing how it will impact their organization.
But it's pretty clear that even though it was the aim of the new CBA to improve "competitive balance," it could have also made it a little bit tougher for teams like Tampa Bay.
-- JOE SMITH