The First-Year Player Draft, also known as the Rule 4 Draft, is Major League Baseball's primary mechanism for assigning amateur baseball players, from high schools, colleges, and other amateur baseball clubs, to its teams. The draft order is determined based on the previous season's standings, with the team possessing the worst record receiving the first pick. In addition, teams which lost free agents in the previous off-season may be awarded "compensatory" picks. In Professional sports a free agent is a team player whose contract with a team has expired and the player is able to sign a contract with another team if that player
The first amateur draft was held in 1965. Unlike most sports drafts, the First-Year Player Draft is held mid-season, in June. Another distinguishing feature of this draft in comparison with those of other North American major professional sports leagues is its sheer size: the 2006 draft lasted 50 rounds and 1,502 players were selected. In contrast, the NBA Draft lasts for only two rounds (60 selections) and the NFL Draft for only seven rounds (256 selections if no picks are forfeited). The NBA Draft is an annual North American event in which the National Basketball Association 's (NBA thirty teams (29 in the United States and one in The NFL Draft is an annual Sports draft in which NFL teams select newly-eligible players for their rosters
The First-Year Player Draft has historically had far less media exposure than its counterparts in the other leagues for two primary reasons:
The 2007 Draft was televised live for the first time in the draft's history on Thursday June 7, 2007 from 2:00pm until 6:00pm EDT (1800 - 2200 hrs UTC). The 2007 First-Year Player Draft was Major League Baseball 's annual amateur draft of High school and College Baseball players Events 1099 - The First Crusade: The Siege of Jerusalem begins Year 2007 ( MMVII) was a Common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar in the 21st century. The Eastern Time Zone ( ET) of the Western Hemisphere falls mostly along the east coast of North America and the west coast of South America  The Draft coverage took place at Disney's Wide World of Sports Complex in Orlando, Florida. Orlando is a major City in central Florida, USA and is the County seat of Orange County Florida.
Major League Baseball has used a draft to assign minor league players to teams since 1921.  In 1936, the National Football League held the first amateur draft in professional sports. The National Football League ( NFL) is the largest professional American football league.  A decade later, the National Basketball Association instituted a similar method of player distribution. However, the player draft was controversial. Congressman Emanuel Celler questioned the legality of drafts during a series of hearings on the business practice of professional sports leagues in the 1950s. Emanuel Celler ( May 6, 1888 – January 15, 1981) was a politician from New York who served in the United States House of Representatives  Successful clubs saw the draft as anti-competitive. Yankees executive Johnny Johnson equated it with communism. Communism is a Socioeconomic structure that promotes the establishment of an egalitarian, classless, stateless Society based  At the same time, Pulitzer Prize winning sports columnist Arthur Daley compared the system to a "slave market. The Pulitzer Prize, ˈpʊlɨtsɚ PULL-it-sər is an American award regarded as the highest national honor in Newspaper journalism, "
Prior to the implementation of the First-Year Player Draft, amateurs were free to sign with any Major League team that offered them a contract. As a result, wealthier teams such as the New York Yankees and St. Louis Cardinals were able to stockpile young talent, while poorer clubs were left to sign less desirable prospects. The New York Yankees are a professional baseball team based in the borough of The Bronx, in New York City, New York. The St Louis Cardinals (also referred to as "the Cards " or "the Redbirds " are a professional Baseball team based in St 
In 1947, Major League Baseball implemented the bonus rule, a restriction aimed at reducing player salaries, as well as keeping wealthier teams from monopolizing the player market. For a list of Bonus Babies please see the List of baseball players who went directly to the major leagues.  In its most restrictive form, it forbade any team which gave an amateur a signing bonus of more than $4,000 from assigning that player to a minor league affiliate for two seasons. If the player was removed from the major league roster, he became a free agent. The controversial legislation was repealed twice, only to be re-instituted. 
The bonus rule was largely ineffective. There were accusations that teams were signing players to smaller bonuses, only to supplement them with under-the-table payments.  In one famous incident, the Kansas City Athletics signed Clete Boyer, kept him on their roster for two years, then traded him to the Yankees just as he became eligible to be sent to the minor leagues. The Oakland Athletics are a professional baseball team based in Oakland, California. Cletis Leroy “Clete” Boyer ( February 9, 1937 &ndash June 4, 2007) was a former Major League Baseball player Part of the History of baseball series Minor league baseball is a hierarchy of Professional baseball leagues in North Other clubs accused the Yankees of using the Athletics as a de facto farm team, and the A's later admitted to signing Boyer on their behalf. 
Major League clubs voted on the draft during the 1964 Winter Meetings. In Major League Baseball, the Winter Meetings are an annual event held each December in which the general managers from each team meet for three and a half Four teams -- the New York Yankees, St. Louis Cardinals, Los Angeles Dodgers, and New York Mets -- attempted to defeat the proposal, but they failed to convince a majority of teams, and in the end only the Cardinals voted against it. The New York Yankees are a professional baseball team based in the borough of The Bronx, in New York City, New York. The St Louis Cardinals (also referred to as "the Cards " or "the Redbirds " are a professional Baseball team based in St The Los Angeles Dodgers are a Major League Baseball team based in Los Angeles California, USA "Mets" redirects here For the medical term see Metastasis. 
Major League Baseball's first amateur draft was held in June of 1965. Teams chose players in reverse order of the previous season's standings, with picks alternating between the National and American League. The National League of Professional Baseball Clubs, or simply the National League ( NL) is the older of two leagues constituting Major League Baseball The American League of Professional Baseball Clubs, or simply the American League ( AL) is one of two leagues that make up Major League Baseball in  With the first pick, the Kansas City Athletics took Rick Monday, an outfielder for Arizona State University. The Oakland Athletics are a professional baseball team based in Oakland, California. Rick Monday (born Robert James Monday Jr on November 20, 1945 in Batesville Arkansas) is a former Center fielder in Major Outfielder is a generic term applied to each of the people playing in the three defensive positions in Baseball farthest from the batter Arizona State University ( ASU) is the largest public Research university in the United States under a single administration with total student
Originally, three separate drafts were held each year. The June draft, which was by far the largest, involved new high school graduates, as well as college seniors who had just finished their seasons. A second draft was held in January for high school and college players who graduated in the winter. Finally, there was a draft in August for players who participated in amateur summer leagues.  The August draft was eliminated after only two years, while the January draft lasted until 1986. 
Early on, the majority of players drafted came directly from high school. Between 1967 and 1971, only seven college players were chosen in the first round of the June draft.  However, the college players who were drafted outperformed their high school counterparts by what statistician Bill James called "a laughably huge margin. George William “Bill” James (born October 5, 1949, in Holton Kansas) is a Baseball writer historian and statistician whose work has been " In 1978, a majority of draftees had played college baseball, and by 2002, the number rose above sixty percent.  While the number of high school players drafted has dropped, those picked have been more successful than their predecessors. In a study of drafts from 1984 to 1999, Baseball Prospectus writer Rany Jazayerli concluded that, by the 1990s, the gap in production between the two groups had nearly disappeared. Baseball Prospectus, sometimes abbreviated as BP, is a Think tank focusing on Sabermetrics, the statistical analysis of Rany Jazayerli (born June 14, 1975) a Chicago -area Dermatologist, is a co-founder and a writer for Baseball Prospectus. 
Initially, the draft succeeded in reducing the value of signing bonuses. In 1964, a year before the first draft, University of Wisconsin outfielder Rick Reichardt was given a record bonus of $205,000 by the Los Angeles Angels. Outfielder is a generic term applied to each of the people playing in the three defensive positions in Baseball farthest from the batter Frederic Carl Reichardt (born March 16, 1943 in Madison Wisconsin) was a Major League Outfielder for the Los Angeles Angels The Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim are a professional baseball team based in Anaheim, California. Without competition from other clubs, the Athletics were able to sign Rick Monday for a bonus of only $104,000. It would take until 1979 for a drafted player to receive a bonus higher than Reichardt's. 
Player salaries continued to escalate through the 1980s. In 1986, Bo Jackson became the first draftee to sign a total contract (signing bonus and salary) worth over one-million dollars. Vincent Edward "Bo" Jackson (born November 30, 1962 in Bessemer Alabama) is an American athlete and a former multi-  Jackson, a Heisman Trophy winning football player for Auburn University, was also the first overall choice in the National Football League Draft, and was offered a seven-million dollar contract to play football for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. American football, known in the United States and Canada simply as football, is a competitive Team sport known for mixing strategy with Auburn University ( AU or Auburn) is a State university located in Auburn, Alabama, U The NFL Draft is an annual Sports draft in which NFL teams select newly-eligible players for their rosters The Tampa Bay Buccaneers (often shortened as the Bucs) are a professional American football team based in Tampa Florida. 
High school players possessed additional leverage, as they had the option of attending junior college and re-entering the draft the next year. Agent Scott Boras routinely exploited this loophole to increase the contracts of his clients. Scott Boras (born November 2, 1952 in Sacramento, California, USA is a prominent sports agent for professional Baseball players In 1990, Boras client Todd Van Poppel signed a $1. Todd Matthew Van Poppel (born December 9, 1971 in Hinsdale Illinois) is a former Major League Baseball Pitcher who played for 2 million contract with Oakland Athletics, after committing to play for the University of Texas. The Oakland Athletics are a professional baseball team based in Oakland, California. The following year, Boras negotiated a $1. 55 million contract for Yankees first round pick Brien Taylor, who had said he would attend junior college if he didn't receive a contract equal to Van Poppel's. The New York Yankees are a professional baseball team based in the borough of The Bronx, in New York City, New York. Brien Taylor (born December 26 1971) is a former Pitcher in Minor league baseball best known for being just the second amateur player to be picked 
Increasingly, teams drafted based on whether or not a player was likely to sign for a particular amount of money, rather than on his talent. This became known as a "signability pick. " Before the 1992 draft, team owners unilaterally decided to extend the period of time a team retained negotiating rights to a player from one year to five. In effect, the rule prohibited a high school draftee from attending college and re-entering the draft after his junior or senior seasons. The Major League Baseball Players Association filed a legal challenge, but Major League Baseball argued that, since the Players Association did not represent amateur players, it was not necessary for the union to agree to the change. The Major League Baseball Players Association (or MLBPA) is the union of professional major-league baseball players An arbitrator ultimately decided that any change to draft articles must be negotiated with the Players Association. 
In order to be drafted a player must fit the following criteria:
The general draft order is the reverse order of the previous year's standings. If two teams finish with identical records, the previous year's standings of the two teams is the tiebreaker, with the team having a worse record receiving the higher pick.
Prior to 2007, a team retained the rights to sign a selected player until one week prior to the next draft, or until the player enters, or returns to, a four-year college on a full-time basis. Starting in 2007, the deadline for signing a drafted player is August 15. A selected player who enters a junior college cannot be signed until the conclusion of the school's baseball season. A player who is drafted and does not sign with the club that selected him may be drafted again at a future year's draft, so long as the player is eligible for that year's draft. A club may not select a player again in a subsequent year, unless the player has consented to the re-selection.
A player who is eligible to be selected and is passed over by every club becomes a free agent and may sign with any club, up until one week before the next draft, or until the player enters, or returns to, a four-year college full-time or enters, or returns to, a junior college. In the one-week period before any draft, which is called the "closed period", the general rule is that no club may sign a new player.
Teams can earn Compensatory picks in the draft based on departing free agents. Free Agents are ranked by the Elias Sports Bureau based on their previous two years of playing, and against players of similar positions. The top 20% of free agents are considered 'Type A' free agents, and the following 20% are 'Type B' free agents. Type A free agents will get their former team a supplemental round pick between the first and second rounds, and a compensatory pick from the signing team. Type B free agents get their former team just a supplemental round pick. To earn a compensatory pick, a free agent must either be signed before the arbitration deadline in early December, or be offered arbitration by their former team but still sign with someone else.
Compensatory picks that one team gives another via this method are the highest available pick that team has. If a team owes two other teams draft picks via Type A free agents, the team whose departing player had a higher score gets the higher ranked pick. A team cannot lose picks it has earned via compensation. Also, the first 15 picks in the draft cannot be lost via compensation, so a team that is in that rank would give up their second round pick.
The order of the supplemental round between the first and second rounds is determined by inverse order of the previous year's standings. All the Type A picks are done first, and then the order resets for all the Type B compensation picks.
Teams can also earn compensation for unsigned picks from the previous year's draft. If a team doesn't sign a first or second round pick, they will get to pick at the same slot plus one the following year. For instance, if the team with the #5 pick does not sign that player, they would have the #6 pick the following year. The regular draft order would continue around those picks. For compensation for not signing a third round pick, teams would get a pick in a supplemental round between the third and fourth rounds. If a team fails to sign a player with one of these compensated picks, there is no compensation the following year.
Baseball draft picks cannot be traded, and picked players cannot be traded until a year after they're drafted.