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Red Sox get free draft pick as Felipe Lopez declines arbitration

Felipe Lopez

St. Louis Cardinals’ Felipe Lopez swings on a two-run double during the eighth inning of a baseball game against the Philadelphia Phillies on Wednesday, July 21, 2010, in St. Louis. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)


At first glance it seemed odd when the Red Sox signed Felipe Lopez for the final week of the season. They were no longer really in the playoff picture and he wouldn’t have been eligible for the postseason roster anyway. He appeared in just four games before becoming a free agent.

So why did they do it? Draft picks.

Lopez has declined the Red Sox’s arbitration offer, which means Boston will be in line for a compensatory draft pick between the first and second rounds if the Type B free agent signs elsewhere.

So for a week’s worth of salary they got 16 plate appearances and a sandwich-round draft pick that, at minimum, is worth several hundred thousand dollars. That’s a pretty great job of working the system by Theo Epstein and company.