There was never deferred contracts until 1985 when the Mets started it with a Daryl Strawberry contract. Now about every team has or did deferred contracts before. Someone always has to be the first to do something, The A’s started they money ball saber matrix, the Rays started the shifts, the Astros started the trash can idea(ok maybe that a bad example) but teams that don’t have the same financial budget of other teams have to do things differently then big market teams do to compete.
Kjerstad had a number and the Orioles knew that number before they drafted him. There have been cases of players in the past changing their number after getting drafted, but it's pretty rare as that is part of the process and is pretty well defined now.
This allows teams to do what the Orioles did this year with Kjerstad so they could get high ceiling high school kids in the 4th and 5th rounds.
Team also do this during normal drafts by drafting senior signs or cheap $10k players in 5th-10th rounds so they can use the savings to get guys with high numbers in other draft positions within the first ten rounds.
If Santander is traded and the package returned does not include at least one high ceiling guy, then I'll start to get real worried. Santander is still a guy who can be part of a willing future here in Baltimore so he's not a guy you move unless you think his return will give you even more value for the future.
Because we've told 50 times why this has nothing to do with the Orioles being cheap. I did hear the Orioles had allotted extra bonus money to a player that was taken before they could pick so they ended up with Baumler who wasn't going to cost as much. It's not like Elias had a prospect he liked better than Baumler, but the player's number was 200k more so he went with Baumler to save a few hundred K.
Yes, it's clear the Orioles are cutting the budget in ways we've never seen before, but they also just spent the most money they've ever spent in Latin America, so it appears that Elias is using his meager budget to build for the future, which means guys like Iglesias and Alberto had to go because of their price tags.
Hopefully this is only because of shortened season last year with no fans in the stadiums and the most likely scenario of reduced fans in the stadiums this summer as well.
Saying that, I don't think many people around Baltimore would be upset if the team was sold by the Angelos family.