First Pitch

First Pitch: Passing on Mark Appel Was a Great Decision For the Pirates

First Pitch: Passing on Mark Appel Was a Great Decision For the Pirates

The Major League Baseball draft doesn't allow you to go over your total bonus pool without some extreme penalties. These include the loss of future draft picks, as well as a 100 percent tax on the overage. If there was any team wondering if an individual player was worth those penalties, all they need to do is look at what happened with the Pittsburgh Pirates and Mark Appel.

Appel was the top prospect in the 2012 draft, but fell to the Pirates at number eight overall due to signability concerns. The Pirates took the chance on him, but ended up passing on signing him, since he was demanding a bonus that would have taken them over their bonus pool. If the Pirates would have signed Appel for his demands, they would have lost their first and second round picks in 2013, plus their first and second round picks in 2014, as well as a tax of about $2-3 M extra, depending on how much they would have had to go over the bonus pool.

Instead, they passed and got a compensation pick the next ye...

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Tim is the owner and editor in chief of Pirates Prospects. He started the site in January 2009, and turned it into his full time job during the 2011 season. Prior to starting Pirates Prospects, Tim worked with AccuScore.com, providing MLB, NHL, and NFL coverage to various national media outlets, including ESPN Insider, USA Today, Yahoo Sports, and the Wall Street Journal. He also writes the annual Prospect Guide, which is sold through the site. Tim lives in Bradenton, where he provides live coverage all year of Spring Training, mini camp, instructs, the Bradenton Marauders, and the GCL Pirates.

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