The 2020 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft will be held on Wednesday, aired at 7 PM ET on MLB Network and ESPN/ESPN2, and live streamed on MLB.com. Per the March agreement between the league and the MLB Players Association, the draft has been shortened to five rounds. The first round and Competitive Balance Round A will be aired tomorrow while the rest of the draft will take place on Thursday.
After finishing 47-114 last season, the worst record in baseball, the Tigers will get to make the first selection in the 2020 draft. It is not yet known who they plan to take, but it is widely believed to be between Spencer Torkelson and Austin Martin. Torkelson is a first baseman from Arizona State University. Martin is a third baseman out of Vanderbilt University.
The Tigers will be followed by the Orioles, Marlins, Royals, Blue Jays, Mariners, Pirates, Padres, Rockies, and Angels in the top-10. The full draft order can be seen here. The Tigers also had the first overall pick in 2018, selecting pitcher Casey Mize out of Auburn University. They picked fifth last year, going with high school outfielder Riley Greene.
As a result of the March agreement, undrafted players can sign with teams for a maximum bonus of $20,000. Teams can sign an unlimited amount of undrafted players.
The March agreement could influence some players not to sign. High school players could choose to play college baseball and some college players could choose to remain in college. The pandemic and ensuing shutdown of the sport allowed Major League Baseball to move forward with its plan to eliminate upwards of 40 minor league teams, significantly reducing the amount of available jobs for lesser-known, unproven players.
Lastly, the March agreement also allowed commissioner Rob Manfred to shorten the 2021 draft to 20 rounds. Normally, the MLB draft lasts 40 rounds.