The Rule 5 Draft was held today as the Winter Meetings come to a close, and the Brewers made a selection in this year’s draft. With the 14th pick in the draft, the Brewers selected Gus Varland of the Dodgers.
Varland was drafted in 2018 by the Athletics. He rose through the Athletics minor-league system but was derailed when he needed Tommy John surgery. He was then traded to the Dodgers and placed at Double-A, where he has struggled. Over two seasons, he’s posted a 5.98 ERA, 9.1 K/9, and 4.7 BB/9. Curt Hogg of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel does note that Varland’s fastball regularly peaked at 98 MPH and he struck out 31 in 18 1⁄3 innings over the last two months of 2022.
As a Rule 5 pick, the Brewers will pay $100,000 to the Dodgers for their selection. Varland must remain on the 26-man roster throughout the 2023 season to remain in the organization. He can be placed on the IL, but restrictions will carry over to 2024 if he is not on the active roster for 90 days. If the Brewers want to remove him from the roster, he will have to pass through outright waivers, and then be offered back to the Dodgers for $50,000.
Statistics courtesy of Baseball-Reference.