The Diamondbacks just released this statement regarding first-round draft pick Barret Loux:
"We have reached an agreement regarding Barret Loux’s status that is mutually beneficial to the parties. Today Commissioner Selig has announced that Loux will become a free agent on September 1. As such, he will be free to sign with any Major League Club at that time. In addition, the Arizona Diamondbacks will receive a Supplemental Selection in the 2011 First-Year Player Draft.
The agreement also provides an opportunity for the Commissioner’s Office and the Players Association globally to the address the issues that can arise from questions concerning a drafted player’s health. Given the private nature of the underlying disagreement here, neither party will be making any further public comments about this situation."
This is an agreement without precedent, as far as I know, but one that seems like a nice resolution to an issue which had enormous potential for rancor, as previously seen. The basic issue appeared to be Loux's health, with both potential shoulder and elbow issues raised by the medical, but there had been concerns that the team, under new management since the draft, simply wanted to walk away from Loux. This would have netted them a pick in 2011, but left Loux in the doldrums for a year.
Now, it's almost as if he were never drafted at all, which seems fair to both parties in the circumstances. One thing not mentioned is whether the "supplemental selection" will be the replacement one the D-backs would have obtained per the rule - #7 - or if it will be lower, perhaps between the first and second rounds. It'll also be interesting to see whether this situation results in any changes to the rules going forward.