Brewers in talks with 11th-round pick

McClanahan, club's top unsigned draftee, has offer to Arizona State

June 30th, 2016

MILWAUKEE -- Will the Brewers stretch their budget to sign one more prominent Draft pick? It's not out of the question.
General manager David Stearns said the club remains in talks with several selections, including their highest unsigned pick, 11th-rounder Chad McClanahan, a 6-foot-5 third baseman from Phoenix Brophy Prep.
McClanahan has a scholarship waiting at Arizona State and communicated to all 30 teams before the Draft that it would take $1.2 million to lure him away from college. That figure becomes significant when one looks at the Brewers' bonus pool.
2016 Draft: Signing and Bonus Tracker
When first-round pick Corey Ray signed Saturday for $4.125 million, Milwaukee had spent $8,723,600 to sign all 11 of the team's selections in the first 10 rounds. That leaves $640,700 remaining from an original allotment of $9,364,300 -- well short of McClanahan's asking price, even when considering that the first $100,000 of a bonus for an individual player taken after the 10th round does not count against the pool.
However, teams can exceed their allotment by up to 5 percent without surrendering future picks, if they are willing to pay a 75 percent tax on the overage. That would give the Brewers another $468,215 with which to work, bringing their potential total to $1,108,915.
And because the first $100,000 doesn't count against the pool, McClanhan's $1.2 million request would just barely fit the budget.
That is, if the Brewers are willing to stretch that budget. Because of the tax for exceeding their original allotment, a $1.2 million bonus would actually cost the team $1,619,550.
Stearns did not rule out exceeding the original pool.
"We would have to evaluate each individual case on its own," he said. "And those are decisions that involve ownership as well."
McClanahan's adviser, Randy Rowley, has been in regular contact with Brewers scouting director Ray Montgomery, including an exchange on Wednesday. The sides will continue to have dialogue, and McClanahan hasn't ruled out skipping college to enter the professional ranks.
"He's still in play," Rowley said.
Other unsigned picks who have not publicly declared their intentions include California prep right-hander Louie Crow (16th round), Pearl River Community College outfielder Zach Clark (19th round) and Kansas prep left-hander Blake Lillis (25th round). Crow has a scholarship at Cal and Lillis at Arkansas.
Teams have until July 15 to sign their unsigned Draft picks.