Christopher Soto - Your Guide to Today's Rule 5 Draft!!


     Today at 12pm, General Managers from everything will have the ability to pluck talent from each others minor league system via the Rule 5 draft. The Rule 5 draft aims to prevent teams from stockpiling too many young players on their minor league affiliate teams when other teams would be willing to have them play in the majors.

     Eligibility depends on the original signing dates of players when they were amateurs in high school or college. Players who were 18 years or younger on the June 5, 2010, or, 19 years or older on the June 5, 2011 are eligible for this year's draft. These group of players can be "protected" from the draft if their respective teams added them to the 40 man roster a few weeks ago.

     The draft consist of 3 phases, a MLB phase, a AAA phase, and a AA phase. In the MLB phase, players who are eligible for the draft and are not on the 40 man roster are available for selection. If a team wants to select a player, they must have an open 40 man roster spot to place them on. The selecting team also needs to keep the selected player on the 25 man active roster for the entirety of the upcoming season. Failure to do so results in the player being returned to his original team, after he passes through waivers. Drafting teams must also pay $50,000 as compensation to the player's original team.

     In the AAA phase, clubs have the ability to add talent to their AAA teams by selecting "unprotected" players on AA or lower rosters. Just like the MLB, minor league teams also have "reserve" rosters that are used to move players up and down through the system. This is why some prospects you would expect to be at a higher level, aren't there because they have not been added to a reserve roster. AAA teams can host 38 players on the reserve roster, AA teams can have 37, the remaining minor league affliates are limited to 35. 

     If a club makes a selection in the AAA phase, the player becomes permanent property of the selecting club. In return compensation of $12,000 must be paid to the player's original team. The only roster restriction for players selected in the AAA phase is that they must be added to the reserve roster only. If a drafted player fails to crack the ACTIVE roster during the 2015 season, the drafting club still retains his rights and does not have to return the player.

     The AA phase has the same rules as the AAA phase. The only differences are, A) eligible players are from the A+ level or lower, and, B) the compensation cost is $4,000.

     The MLB phase of the Rule 5 draft is generally only for show as most players selected are returned to their original clubs. In the entire history of the draft, only 1 player was ever drafted that went on to have a Hall of Fame career (Roberto Clemente). 

     That said, there have been a few hits every once in a while. José Bautista, Alfredo Simon, Jason Grilli, Josh Hamilton, Johan Santana, Joakim Soria, Dan Uggla, Shane Victorino, Jayson Werth, and R.A. Dickey were all former Rule 5 draftees who have had success in the MLB.

     This year's crop of draft eligible players is certainly an interesting one. There are a number of unique players who could potential stick onto an MLB roster and contribute to a team's success:
(Courtesy of Baseball America)

Steven Baron, c, Mariners: an excellent defensive catcher with a light bat. He could easily stick as an MLB backup catcher.

Mark Canha, 1b, Marlins: with an above-average hit tool and average power, Canha can stick to an MLB as a back-up 1B, 3B, or even LF.

Edgar de la Rosa, rhp, Tigers: de la Rosa brings some serious heat to the table. The massive 6' 8" righty can crank it up to 100 mph at his best and pairs it with a usable changeup. Even though he's a minor league SP, he would fit in a big league bullpen.

Delino DeShields, of, Astros: despite being labeled as a "clubhouse problem" and "lazy" for not running out balls, DeShields still has the best tools in the Rule 5 draft. He is the only minor leaguer to ever hit 10 HR and steal bags in a season. DeShields could be an MLB teams starting CF.

Gregory Infante, rhp, Blue Jays: he's already made it to the majors once but was left unprotected this year. Infante struggles with control but still has a 97 mph fastball plus an average slider. He’s throwing well in the Venezuelan League for La Guaira.

Andrew McKirahan, lhp, Cubs: a full time reliever and former Tommy John recipient, Andrew brings plus velocity from the left side thanks to his 96 mph fastball. He mixes it with an average breaking ball as well.


Thomas Brennan said...

I have a Rule 5 headache after reading those rules, but it will be interesting to see who the Mets lose...or draft.

Mack Ade said...

Christopher is at the helm of the ship today...

(laying in the hot pool...)

Thomas Brennan said...

Hot pool? Snow outside my commuter train window! Enjoy the R&R, Mack!

Hobie said...

So TJR, Dustin Lawley and Xorge Carrillo are eligible for the AAA draft?

Mack Ade said...

Is Taijeron?

Mack Ade said...

I'm not posting this up as a "TRADE" since this one hasn't got legs yet this morning, by the Matt Kemp days are over in LA, huh? Shipped to San Diego for Yazmany Grandal

Christopher Soto said...

The general public does not have access to the minor league reserve rosters so I'm not sure about any minor league guys eligibility

Hobie said...

There are 11 P, 2 C, 4 IF & 4 OF listed on the Bingo roster, none on the 40-man and all "active."

Are you saying, Chris, that some of those (who are not MLB Rule 5 protected) may actually be on some LV Reserve List?

Christopher Soto said...

You are Correct Hobie.

And while the Bingo roster may only be at 21 there could be an additional 16 in St. Lucie, Brooklyn, etc. that are on Binghamton's reserve roster.

I am trying the best I can to get my hands on those lists.

Christopher Soto said...


The Kemp trade is done.

San Diego gets:
OF Matt Kemp
C Tim Federowicz

LA Dodgers get:
Yasmani Grandal
Joe Wieland
Zach Eflin

Bill MetsiaC said...

Thanks for the info, Chris. A few questions:

You said MLB must pay $50G to the former team. Isn't it the drafting team that pays the compensation?

I've read that there's a limit on how many players can be drafted from an org, or from a particular team. Do you have info on that?

In the past, I'm pretty sure I remember something about a player who doesn't stick with the drafting team having to clear waivers before the original team gets him back. Is that still in effect, or was it ever?

Thanks again.

Christopher Soto said...


Thanks for that mistake.....I will correct it.

- Teams can draft as many players until they reached a full 40 man roster.

So the Mets limit, with a 39 guys on the 40 man roster, is 1.

Meanwhile the Yankees, who have 37 guys on their 40 man, can draft 3 guys.

The each phase continues another round until all 32 teams pass consecutively.

You are also correct on the waivers piece. If a team chosen to return a player to the original club, the Rule 5 player must clear waivers. During this time a 3rd team can pick up the Rule 5 player. However, If they do so, the same roster rules apply to the 3rd club.

Hobie said...

What I understood, Bill, was that the drafting team paid a $50G fee to the former club for what is essentially a "tryout." If he does not stick on the 25 man, they must offer him back for $25G to the original club before putting him on their reserve list.

Christopher Soto said...


The Dodgers are also covering $30m of Kemp's remaining 5 yr/$107m contract.

So Kemp's new AAV for the Padres is $15.4m per season.

Zozo said...

Hopefully we don't lose too many people in the draft today. It was said that the Blue Jays are going to go hard after our young unprotected guppies :(.
I want to thank Mets ownership for losing out on a great number 4 hitter today that would have only cost us about $15 million a year and minimal prospects. I believe the Padres got a steal today. They better get someone to protect him in that lineup, would have been nice to put him in front of Wright.

Thomas Brennan said...

It sure would help us if Mets team posted who was unprotected.

Bill Metsiac said...


Thanks again. My question about the limited numbers was about a limit on how many players a team can lose, not how many they can draft.

For example, could a ML team lose 5 players from its system, of a AA team lose that many? I seem to remember a limit to protect a team/org from being hit too hard.

Thanks again.

Christopher Soto said...


Agreed....not even the beat writers have published lists.

Bill Metsiac said...

Wow, that came out jumbled. Is there a way a poster here can edit his comments after they're posted. Embarrassing!

Lew Rhodes said...

Bill - You can delete your own posts.

Lew Rhodes said...

I am not sold on Kemp being able to stay healthy - and $15 mill a year will likely look really bad in years 3-5

Kevin S said...


I certainly wouldn't say the Kemp trade costed the Padres minimal prospects. A 26 year old catcher who can hit and isn't terrible defensively is certainly a valuable trade piece.

Christopher Soto said...


The Mets equivalent in that Dodgers/Padres trade would have been

Travis d'Arnaud, Rafael Montero, and Gabriel Ynoa

Anonymous said...

Cespedes to DET for Porcello

Zozo said...

I would have made that deal, as long as we could of traded Granderson

Zozo said...

Mets signed Mayberry

eraff said...

The Dodgers have been Dazzling with their activityy....hard to evaluate the trades from their perspective because of the sheer volume.

As for the trade itself--- Grandal is 26...the pitchers are 20 and 21. All of the players received by LA are 1st round pedigree guys. The Pitchers are very young and moving quickly and successfully up the ladder.

I'm not sure of the "Mets Equivalent"--- Start with d'Arnaud and Molina... add a young pitcher at A+/AA. The Pitchers in the deal are very highly regarded.

It's one helluva haul!

bob gregory said...

If Alderson really wanted to compete for post season glory and not just say the words;

imagine if he acquired Kemp and Cespedes instead of Cuddyer...

both also have the added benefit of having produced in larger ballparks like Oakland and LA

Christopher Soto said...


Kemp can barely play the OF anymore...we all saw how terrible he was in RF when he came to Citi Field.

Committed 3 errors and misplayed 2 additional balls in 2 games.

Meanwhile the asking price for Cespedes was too for a guy who is going to be a Free agent at the end of the year.

No way I would give up 6 years of Syndergaard or even Montero for 1 of Cespedes when I could get Cuddyer for nothing.

Bill Metsiac said...

If we signed Mayberry, does he become#40 on the roster, meaning we can't pick anyone in the Rule V? Or did he sign a MnL deal?

Bill Metsiac said...


Lew Rhodes said...

Bill we drafted someone - so that answers that!

Mayberry hasn't signed officially yet, so when he does they will have to remove someone from the 40 man

Or trade Gee before Mayberry signs

Christopher Soto said...


Exactly what lew rhodes

bob gregory said...


you make it sound like Kemp was averaging 3 errors per game.

7 errors in 143 games, especially when you consider it was his first year back from ankle injuries.....

That is definitely acceptable when you combine it with his 25 hrs, 38 doubles, 89rbi, 77 runs.
remember also these offensive numbers were reached even after a very slow start to the season as he was returning from injury.

Additionally... Both Cespedes and Kemp most likely could have been acquired without losing Syndegard.

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