From today's chat with BA's Jim Callis:
- John (Richmond, VA): Any updates on Nats picks Purke, Turnbull, Buchanon, and Laxer? Thank you.
Jim Callis: I don't think Purke is going to sign for less than he turned down of high school, so I don't think he's going to sign. He's competitive enough to take his chances of returning to full health, which could make him the No. 1 pick in the 2012 draft. Turnbull is slow going so far, but I bet the Nats sign him. I see Buchanan and Laxer as backup problems in case they don't get Rendon, Meyer or Goodwin signed at the top of the draft. Those three might cost a combined $10 million (counting salaries in a big league deal for Rendon), but I bet they sign all three.
That should be a sure thing bet. There would be no point to getting draft pick compensation and then NOT signing the picks.
But what would chap my hide is not shelling out for Purke now. Later in the chat, Purke is mentioned as a potential #1 overall pick in 2012. And all it will cost you is $$$$$$$. I point to the fact that the Nats payroll is at least $40 million less than it should be based on the size of the media market they play in. So, giving Purke $4 million and walking away with a potential top of the draft pitcher seems to be an easy call. Write the check.
I understand the risk involved. It is more likely that Purke never develops into an All Star, its very likely that he never develops into a major league average starter. But there is a chance he develops into a top of the rotation ace. Try and get one of them, just try. Even if you can, it will cost an order of magnitude more than $4 million. Its a risk worth taking gentlemen.