By Rob Rains

After Randy Flores and a room full of Cardinals scouts watched Monday night as 75 players came off the draft board, they finally will get to join the party on Tuesday.

The Cardinals lost their first-round pick when they signed free agent Dexter Fowler and had their next two picks awarded to the Astros as compensation for former scouting director Chris Correa hacking into their computer database.

They will make their first of eight selections on Tuesday as the three-day draft moves into round 3. The Cardinals have the 19th pick in that round, which will be the 94th overall selection.

As they would have done even if they had a pick or two on Monday night, the Cardinals re-ranked their draft board after all of the first 75 selections were made but still had no guarantees of who they would pick first on Tuesday.

“It’s a bit of a waiting game,” Flores said.

The biggest challenge for Flores and his team of scouts in this unusual year is not ranking the players according to their ability, it is figuring out who they can afford to sign.

Losing the three top picks dramatically cut into the pool assigned to the Cardinals for signing bonuses. The team has less money than the other 29 teams, and the total of just under $2.2 million is less than the bonus they paid to top pick Delvin Perez last year.

Picks between the third and 10th round are subject to that bonus cap, and the team can exceed its cap by no more than 5 percent before incurring additional penalties.

“There’s always that blend between ranking the board and matching that with ‘do they want to play and how bad do they want to play?’” Flores said. “It is tricky, and matched by our very small budget, it presents some scenarios that we will examine on who is left.

“It is a draft, and no matter where you think somebody is going to go, some team might change how it thinks about a player based on how their board shakes out.”

The Cardinals can save money on some of their picks by taking college seniors, as they often do between rounds seven and 10, because those players have virtually no leverage in negotiations since their college eligibility has been completed.

Flores planned to keep his scouts engaged on Monday night, acting as if it was the Cardinals’ turn to pick before every team made its selection, and then see what actual player was chosen.

“We will have a greater sense of how our board is re-ranked, and then match that with any adjustments on signabilty and then come in tomorrow,” he said. “And it’s not like we have the first pick tomorrow either.

“If the board shifts in a way that aligns with an opportunity for us, we would be opportunistic.”

Two local players came off the board Monday night, as expected. Missouri State third baseman Jake Burger, a graduate of CBC High School, was the 11th overall pick by the White Sox – his favorite team growing up. He modeled his swing after former White Sox’s star Paul Konerko.

Tanner Houck, a right-handed pitcher from Missouri out of Colllinsville, Ill., was the 24th overall pick in the draft, selected by the Boston Red Sox.

The Cardinals will select eight players on Tuesday in rounds 3 through 10. The draft concludes on Wednesday with rounds 11 through 40.

Among local players who could be selected on Tuesday are TCU right-hander Brian Howard, who went Saint Louis University High; Josh Fleming, a left-hander from Webster University who had the lowest ERA in the country among Division III schools, and Jackson Rutledge, a right-handed pitcher from Rockwood Summit High School.

Follow Rob Rains on Twitter @RobRains for complete draft coverage