What is the Prospect Promotion Incentive?

Graphic from Nationals Source

The Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) that is in place now from 2022, put measures in-place to discourage service time manipulation. One measure is the Prospect Promotion Incentive and for the first time, it could impact the Washington Nationals. What impact could the PPI have on how the Nationals treat the three players that qualify in 2024 for them? Those players are pictured above in Dylan Crews, Brady House, and James Wood.

 To Qualify for PPI team rewards a player must: 

  • A player must be on at least 2 of the recognized preseason Top-100 prospect lists from MLB.com, Baseball America, and/or ESPN to qualify.
  • The player must be rookie eligible per MLB rules meaning they are still considered prospects with less than 60 days MLB service time
  • Must accrue a full year of service time (172 days on the active roster) and a key is active on the Opening Day roster or within 2 weeks after giving enough time to accrue the necessary 172 days

Rewards for a PPI player:

If a player that meets the PPI requirements and wins Rookie of the Year award, their team will earn an extra draft pick after the first round, and the bonus pool money that comes along with it. Players who earn second or third in Rookie of the Year voting earn their teams a pick in the international draft if they ever have one.

Players who meet all three of the qualifications above and finish top three in MVP or Cy Young Award balloting prior to qualifying for arbitration will net their clubs a PPI draft pick after the first round. There is a limit of one PPI pick per organization per year, and a player may qualify his club for a PPI pick only once.

Why it might impact the Nats this year:

I would say the chances of these three making the OD roster is slim… however if they plan on calling them up shortly after the year starts they have to make sure the player gets the 172 days. If a qualified Top-100 player is on the roster for less than 172 days and still wins the ROY (which is unlikely but certainly possible) or runner-up for ROY, the team does not get the draft pick and the player still gets the full year of service time. Some refer to that as the Adley Rutschman rule as he won the runner-up ROY and because he was not on the roster for the 172 days he still got credited for a full season of service time and will be a free agent after the 2027 season.

In Rutschman’s case, it worked great for him — and not for his team. It did not work for the Braves given that Michael Harris II won the ROY, but because he wasn’t on two Top-100 prospect lists, the Braves didn’t get that bonus draft pick. The system is not perfect and needs tweaking given there is no international draft and no extra incentives for the second and third runners-up in the ROY voting.


Certainly, we will know more on this as we get to a month from today with the Nats Future’s Game coming to Nationals Park on March 26. We should have an idea leading up to that as to any of the top prospects who look good enough to make the Opening Day roster. Of course Wood is the talk of baseball right now after he smashed two homers in the first two games of Spring Training. Baseball is funny like that in reactive style, even though Wood has had all of six memorable plate appearances. As the small sample sizes get larger, we will know a lot more and whether this makes any sense for further discussion.

You can follow NationalsSource on social media: Twitter/X and Instagram

This entry was posted in Analysis, Awards. Bookmark the permalink.