If you have a TweetDeck feed following all the MLB teams and beat writers -- like I do -- you probably noticed the 20-minute flurry of tweets a few hours ago that mostly concerned players you've never heard of.
That was the Rule 5 Draft.
Quick, simple, and rarely game-changing, the Rule 5 Draft allows teams to take players from other teams' minor-league systems. So long as a player has had the requisite amount of professional playing time and is not protected by inhabiting a spot on his team's 40-man roster, that player is draft eligible.
There are three phases to the draft, but the one that matters most is the first one: major-league phase. Players taken in this round must be placed on the new team's 25-man roster for the entirety of the following season. Teams can pass or draft as they please, and some even choose to bypass the whole thing.
Josh Hamilton and Johan Santana are former Rule 5 picks, so finding diamonds in the rough is possible, but not really probable. Of the players listed below, I'd probably give Alfredo Silverio the best shot of putting together a solid career, though that may just be because he's the only one whose name I recognize.
Major League Phase:
- 1. Astros take RHP Josh Fields from the Red Sox
- 2. Cubs take RHP Hector Rondon from the Indians
- 3. Rockies take LHP Daniel Rosenbaum from the Nationals
- 4. Twins take RHP Ryan Pressly from the Red Sox
- 5. Indians take 1B Chris McGuiness from the Rangers
- 6. Marlins take OF Alfredo Silverio from the Dodgers
- 7. Red Sox take 2B Jeff Kobernus from the Nationals
- 10. Mets take RHP Kyle Lobstein from the Rays
- 14. DBacks take RHP Starling Peralta from the Cubs
- 15. Phillies take OF Ender Inciarte from the Diamondbacks
- 17. White Sox take SS Angel Sanchez from the Angels
- 23. Orioles take LHP T.J. McFarland from the Indians
- 24. Rangers take RHP Coty Woods from the Rangers
- 1. Astros take 1B Nate Freiman from the Padres
- 6. Marlins take LHP Brauilo Lara from the Rays