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The Brewers' Rule 5 Draft Eligible Players

As noted in my FanPost of Sunday night, the deadline for filing major league and minor league reserve lists is fast approaching.  Eligible players not added to the major league 40-man roster by November 20 can be selected in the Rule 5 draft.

What does it take to be eligible?

  • If 19 or older on the June 5th before he signed his first contract, a player is eligible for the fourth Rule 5 draft after signing (usually after four years in the minors).
  • If 18 or younger on the June 5th before he signed his first contract, a player is eligible for the fifth Rule 5 draft after signing (usually after five years in the minors).
  • Any player who is eligible for one Rule 5 draft is eligible for all subsequent Rule 5 drafts.

(see ESPN Transactions Primer, Baseball America Rule 5 Draft column, MLB Rules summaries)

You may recall some Brewers being added to the 40-man roster last offseason to protect them from the Rule 5 draft.  Omar Aguilar, Alexandre Periard, Mark Rogers, and Cody Scarpetta were the fantastic four.  At the risk of undermining the above statements, Scarpetta actually became eligible for the draft through a little-known technicality: the Brewers voided his original contract because of an injury and later re-signed him, making him immediately eligible (link).  That comes up probably once in a February blue moon.

I have attempted to make a comprehensive list of Brewers farmhands who are eligible for the Rule 5 draft.  Obviously not all (or even most) of these players are realistic candidates to be selected. In addition, some of these guys may be minor league free agents. If you think I've made a mistake or missed someone, post a comment. Notable names are above the jump while you must click and scroll for the rest. Ages listed are for the 2010 season and levels listed are where the player spent the bulk of 2009:

  • Zach Braddock (22, LHP, A+/AA - one of the last draft-and-follow players, he did not sign until the spring of 2006 at the age of 18. This gives him one more year before becoming eligible.)
  • Lorenzo Cain (24, CF, AA)
  • Chris Cody (26, LHP, AA/AAA)
  • Nick Green (25, RHP, AA/AAA)
  • Taylor Green (23, 3B, AA - another draft-and-follow guy, brewerfan has him signing June 1, 2006. Since he did not turn 19 until November 2005, I think that puts him in the 18 and younger category and means he is not eligible until next offseason. Lorenzo Cain was in a similar situation last year.)
  • Dave Johnson (27, RHP, AAA)
  • Mike Jones (27, RHP, A+/AA/AAA - former #1 pick finally reached AAA, did not do well)
  • Brendan Katin (27, RF, AAA)
  • Mike Ramlow (24, LHP, Inj/A - yet another draft-and-follow, injured most of this season)
  • Amaury Rivas (24, RHP, A+)

The Brewers currently have 33 of 40 roster spots filled.  I am not 100% sure of Green's exemption from the draft but the Brewers certainly have roster room if I'm wrong.  We'll all find out together on Friday.  Assuming Green does not need to be protected, I think only Lorenzo Cain and Amaury Rivas really need to be added to the roster.  I don't think the other guys are tempting enough for any team to commit a 25-man roster spot in December.  Correct me if I'm wrong, but the current talent and/or upside just aren't there.

As promised, the rest of the Rule 5 eligible farmhands.

The following players would have been Rule 5 eligible but are already minor league free agents according to Brewerfan. A few names from the above list (i.e., Redman) probably belong down here, too:

That's a lot of links about a bunch of guys no one will remember a few weeks from now. :)