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July 19, 2022 at 6:20 PM

Welcome to the 2022 Draft Signing Period!


Now that the 2022 First-Year Player Draft is in the books, the signing period is upon us. With some limited exceptions, this year's signing deadline is 5:00 pm ET on August 1, 2022. As most of our readers know, each team's spending on draft pick bonuses is capped. The overall bonus cap is determined by the number and placement of each team's selections.

The bonus cap sets an aggregate limit for a team to spend on its selections in the first ten rounds and also limits teams from spending over $125,000 on players taken after the 10th round (the excess on any late-round bonuses will count against the bonus pool). Boston's cap is $8,078,300 this year. If the club exceeds its pool: (1) by 0-5%, it will be charged a 75% tax on the excess; (2) by 5-10%, it will pay the same tax and will also lose its first-round pick next season; (3) by 10-15%, it will be charged a 100% tax on the excess and lose its first- and second-round picks next season; and (4) by more than 15%, 100% tax on the excess and lose its next two first-round picks.

These are obviously harsh penalties, making it highly unlikely that the Red Sox will go more than 5% over the pool limit in any year. However, the team has shown that it is willing to pay the requisite tax and go up to 5% over the cap, which would place the team's spending limit (not counting the first $125,000 given to any pick after the 10th round) at about $8,482,215. One other wrinkle to remember is that if Boston fails to sign any of its picks from the first 10 rounds, the team's pool will be reduced by the slot amount for the unsigned player's draft position. Here are the bonus slots for each of Boston's top picks:

1st round (No. 24): $2,974,900
2nd round (No. 40): $1,905,500
2nd round (No. 79): $820,000
3rd round: $617,200
4th round: $461,000
5th round: $343,800
6th round: $266,200
7th round: $208,600
8th round: $173,100
9th round: $158,100
10th round: $149,900

At first blush, it appears that all of Boston's picks in the first 10 rounds are signable, and some draftees may already have pre-draft deals in place. It has been reported that third-round pick Roman Anthony has a pre-draft deal in place for well in excess of slot value - possibly as high as $2.5 million. Ninth-round pick Brooks Brannon will also likely require an over-slot deal to sign away from his commitment to UNC. He is probably the biggest question mark from the top ten rounds.

After the 10th round, the Red Sox took a few interesting prep players, but it seems quite possible that the club stretched all of its pool money on the first ten rounds. One intriguing wrinkle is that 18th-rounder RHP Austin Ehrlicher is eligible to be a draft and follow as a junior college draftee. That means he would not be subject to the August 1 deadline but could sign all the way up until next year's draft, and any bonus under $225,000 would not count against the pool.

For some additional detail, my initial projections on who will sign are in the 2022 Draft Signing Period Discussion Thread in the SoxProspects Forum.  The projections will be updated regularly, and that thread will include detailed discussion and snippets of info from across the web.

Mike Andrews is Editor-in-Chief of SoxProspects.com. Follow him on Twitter @MikeAndrewsSP.