Marlins hold seventh overall Draft pick

Marlins hold seventh overall Draft pick

The 2016 Draft will take place from today through Saturday, beginning with the Draft preview show on MLB Network and MLB.com tonight at 6 p.m. ET. Live Draft coverage from MLB Network's Studio 42 begins at 7 p.m., with the top 77 picks being streamed on MLB.com and broadcast on MLB Network. MLB.com's exclusive coverage of Day 2 begins with a live Draft show at 12:30 p.m. on Friday, with exclusive coverage of Day 3 beginning at 1 p.m. on Saturday.

MLB.com's coverage includes Draft Central, the Top 200 Draft Prospects list and Draft Tracker, a live interactive application that includes a searchable database of over 1,500 Draft-eligible players. Every selection will be tweeted live from @MLBDraftTracker, and you can also keep up to date by following @MLBDraft. And get into the Draft conversation by tagging your tweets with #mlbdraft.

Some wheeling and dealing at the 2015 non-waiver Trade Deadline has left the Marlins with a gap between their first two picks. When the club dealt Mat Latos and Michael Morse to the Dodgers last July, it also parted with its Lottery Round A selection, which is now the 40th pick held by the Braves. Miami also doesn't have a second-round choice, which was compensation to Baltimore for free-agent left-hander Wei-Yin Chen.

"I made the statement [to the front office], 'I don't think we can find Chen out of the Draft who could pitch in April before the Draft in June,'" Marlins vice president of scouting Stan Meek said.

Here's how the Draft is shaping up for the Marlins, whose first selection is the seventh overall pick.

In about 50 words
College hitting and high school pitching highlight the Draft, so the Marlins will wait to see what is available when they're on the clock.

"We'll get something we really think we're going to like based on our list going in," Meek said.

The scoop
By having just two of the first 84 picks, the Marlins don't have the luxury of stockpiling picks early in the Draft. They find themselves with their top choices being seventh and 84th overall. Still, they are scouting the top players heavily.

"An injury might happen," Meek said. "Somebody might get down to you that you never thought would, so we feel we're going to be very prepared for the 84th pick."

Top 2016 MLB Draft Prospects

First-round buzz
Left-hander Braxton Garrett, from Florence, Ala., is a Vanderbilt commit Miami is paying plenty of attention to, but outfielder Corey Ray from Louisville could get the nod if he slips to seventh.

Money matters
Under the Collective Bargaining Agreement, each team has an allotted bonus pool equal to the sum of the values of that club's selections in the first 10 rounds of the Draft. The more picks a team has, and the earlier it picks, the larger the pool. The signing bonuses for a team's selections in the first 10 rounds, plus any bonus greater than $100,000 for a player taken after the 10th round, will apply toward the bonus-pool total.

Any team going up to 5 percent over its allotted pool will be taxed at a 75 percent rate on the overage. A team that overspends by 5-10 percent gets a 75 percent tax plus the loss of a first-round pick. A team that goes 10-15 percent over its pool amount will be hit with a 100 percent penalty on the overage and the loss of a first- and second-round pick. Any overage of 15 percent or more gets a 100 percent tax plus the loss of first-round picks in the next two Drafts.

The Marlins have nine picks total in the first 10 rounds, and a bonus pool figure of $6,665,900 to get them signed. The figure is pretty much on par with their 2015 allocation, when they had $6,766,400 to work with. There are recommended dollars for each round, but players can sign for more or less. Last year's first-rounder, Josh Naylor (12th overall), for example, came to terms at $2.25 million, although his bonus slot was $3,051,800.

Typically, clubs will shed off some slots and use the difference on some later-round picks. For the seventh pick on Thursday, the recommended figure is $3,756,300.

Shopping list
Pitching and depth up the middle are being targeted. Power bats, like always, are scarce. If one is still on the board, Miami may lean in that direction.

Trend watch
Going back to 2002, the year the current ownership stepped in, the Marlins have selected a catcher in the top 10 rounds in every Draft except 2012. There's a reason. First, it's hard to find high-end backstops, and it is difficult to develop once in the system.

Recent Draft history

Rising fast
Third baseman Brian Anderson has been on the move. The third-rounder from the University of Arkansas in 2014 was recently promoted from Class A Advanced Jupiter to Double-A Jacksonville. With the Hammerheads, he batted .302/.377/.440 with three homers and 25 RBIs. Anderson is the organization's No. 12 prospect, per MLBPipeline.com.

Top Prospects: Anderson, MIA

Cinderella story
Right-hander Austin Brice, a converted outfielder who went in the ninth round in 2010, impressed the big league staff in Spring Training. Brice is pitching well at Jacksonville, and he could make the jump to Triple-A New Orleans at some point this year. Brice is ranked 22nd by MLBPipeline.com.

In The Show
The top of the 2011 Draft is now two-fifths of Miami's rotation -- Jose Fernandez (14th overall) and lefty Adam Conley (second round).

A number of other prominent homegrown players are fixtures on the roster: Giancarlo Stanton (second round, 2007), J.T. Realmuto (third round, 2010), Christian Yelich (first round, '10), Tom Koehler (18th round, '08), A.J. Ramos (21st round, '09), and Nick Wittgren (ninth round, '12).

The Marlins' recent top picks
2015: Naylor, 1B, Class A Greensboro
2014: Tyler Kolek, RHP, disabled list (Tommy John surgery)
2013: Colin Moran, 3B, traded to Astros (July 2014 in Jarred Cosart deal)
2012: Andrew Heaney, LHP, traded to Dodgers (2014 Winter Meetings, then dealt to Angels)
2011: Fernandez, RHP, 2013 National League Rookie of Year Award winner, ace of the staff

Joe Frisaro has covered the Marlins for MLB.com since 2002. He writes a blog, called The Fish Pond. Follow him on Twitter @JoeFrisaro and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.