Cubs 2021 Rule 5 Draft & Minor League Free-Agent Watch List
As things stand right now...
70 Cubs minor leaguers are eligible for selection in the December 2021 MLB Rule 5 Draft, and 47 Cubs minor leaguers (42 post-2021 6YFA and five 2021 second-contract players) are eligible to be declared MLB Rule 55 minor league 6YFA at 5 PM Eastern on the 5th day after the final game of the 2021 World Series (or at 5 PM Eastern on October 15th if the 2021 World Series is cancelled).
In addition, RHP Pedro Strop and C Tony Wolters (both with Article XIX-A status) and INF Ildemaro Vargas (who has Article XX-D status) accepted an Outright Assignment to the minors and deferred free-agency until the day after the conclusion of the MLB regular season, unless the player is added back to the MLB 40-man roster prior to filing for free-agency.
Among the Cubs first-time Rule 5 Draft eligibles post-2021 are RHPs Riley Thompson, Cam Sanders, Jeremiah Estrada, Ethan Roberts, Yovanny Cruz, Manuel Espinoza, Eduarniel Nunez, and Benjamin Rodriguez, LHP Jack Patterson, 1B Shendrik Apostel, 1B-OF Alfonso Rivas, INFs Luis Verdugo, Andy Weber, Luis Vazquez, Yeison Santana, and Fabian Pertuz, and OF Nelson Velazquez. R. Thompson and Rivas would (right now) seem to be very likely to get added to the 40 on 11/19 (if not earlier), and Patterson is likely (but not as likely as R. Thompson and Rivas) to be added. The other 15 listed above are legit candidates to get added to the 40 on 11/19 (the roster filing deadline will be a day earlier than usual in 2021 because 11/20 falls on a Saturday), but it's way too early right now to say which ones will and which ones will not be added. Whichever ones are not added to the 40 on 11/19 will very likely be placed on the AAA Iowa reserve list so that they will be eligible for selection in the Major League Phase of the Rule Draft only.
Cubs minor leaguers who were eligible for selection in the 2020 Rule 5 Draft and who will be eligible again in 2021 include RHPs Jose Albertos, Javier Assad, Bailey Clark, Danis Correa, Ben Hecht, Peyton Remy, Michael Rucker, and Dauris Valdez, LHPs Brendon Little and Wyatt Short, C-1B-3B Cam Balego, SS Aramis Ademan, INF Delvin Zinn, INF-OF Trent Giambrone, 1B-OF Jared Young, and OFs Eddy Julio Martinez, Connor Myers, and (ex-INF) Yonathan Perlaza. Of the Rule 5 Draft eligibles who were also eligible for selection in 2020, Brendon Little and Dauris Valdez are the only ones likely to be added to the 40.
Among the noteworthy Cubs minor leaguers who will be eligible to be a minor league free-agent for the first time post-2021 (if the player is not added to the 40 or signs a 2022 minor league successor contract prior to being declared a 6YFA at 5 PM Eastern on the 5th day after the final game of the World Series) are C-INF P. J. Higgins, RHRP Trevor Megill, RHRP Eury Ramos, LHRP Bryan Hudson, RHRP Craig Brooks, and OF Donnie Dewees. Megill, Ramos, and Higgins are the ones most-likely to get added to the 40.
Cubs minor leaguers eligible to be minor league free-agents again post-2021 are RHRP (ex-1B) Jerrick Suiter, LHRP Luis Lugo, and LHRP Ryan Lawlor (all three signed 2021 minor league succesor contracts).
CUBS MINOR LEAGUERS ELIGIBLE FOR SELECTION IN 2021 RULE 5 DRAFT (last updated 4-14-2021)
Aramis Ademan, INF
Jose Albertos, RHP
Chris Allen, LHP
Edmond Americaan, OF
Shendrik Apostel, 1B
D. J. Artis, OF
Javier Assad, RHP
Cam Balego, C-INF
Alejandro Carrillo, LHP
Derek Casey, RHP
Bailey Clark, RHP
Danis Correa, RHP
Rochest Cruz, INF
Yovanny Cruz, RHP
Zach Davis, OF
Luis Devers, RHP
Christian Donahue, INF
Tyler Durna, 1B
Manuel Espinoza, RHP
Jeremiah Estrada, RHP
Miguel Fabrizio, C
Kelvin Feliz, RHP
Misael Garcia, LHP
Reivaj Garcia, INF
Trent Giambrone, IF-OF
Ben Hecht, RHP
Brandon Hughes, LHP (ex-OF)
Josue Huma, INF
Gabriel Jaramillo, RHP
Widimer Joaquin, INF
Levi Jordan, INF
Caleb Knight, C
Brendon Little, LHP
Dakota Mekkes, RHP
Connor Myers, OF
Tommy Nance, RHP
Eduarniel Nunez, RHP
Carlos Ocampo, RHP
Carlos Pacheco, OF
Jack Patterson, LHP
Yonathan Perlaza, OF (ex-INF)
Fabian Pertuz, INF
Oswaldo Pina, INF
Jake Reindl, RHP
Jorge Remon, RHP
Peyton Remy, RHP
Samuel Reyes, RHP
Alfonso Rivas, 1B-OF
Ethan Roberts, RHP
Benjamin Rodriguez, RHP
Jonathan Rodriguez, OF
Luis Angel Rodriguez, LHP
Michael Rucker, RHP (Article XX-D player)
Cam Sanders, RHP
Yeison Santana, INF
Wyatt Short, LHP
Jonathan Sierra, OF
Jake Slaughter, INF-OF
Matt Swarmer, RHP
Riley Thompson, RHP
Erich Uelmen, RHP
Dauris Valdez, RHP
Didier Vargas, LHP
Luis Vazquez, INF
Nelson Velazquez, OF
Luis Verdugo, INF
Andy Weber, INF
Blake Whitney, RHP
Jared Young, 1B-OF
Delvin Zinn, INF
Additionally, a free-agent who signs a 2021 minor league contract prior to the 2020 Rule 5 Draft will be eligible for selection in the 2020 Rule 5 Draft if the player was 18 or younger on the June 5th immediately prior to signing his first contract and it is at least the 5th Rule 5 Draft following his first qualified season, and a minor league player who was 19 years or older on the June 5th immediately prior to signing his first contract becomes eligible for selection starting with the 4th Rule 5 Draft following his first qualified season.
MLB RULE 55 FREE-AGENT POST-2021 WORLD SERIES
SIX-YEAR MINOR LEAGUE FREE-AGENTS:
Sergio Alcantara, INF (Article XX-D player) - no minor league options left
Abiatal Avelino, INF (Article XX-D player) - one minor league option left
Joe Biagini, RHP (Article XX-D player) - no minor league options left
James Bourque, RHP (Article XX-D player) - one minor league option left
Craig Brooks, RHP (see NOTE-2)
Jesus Camargo, RHP (see NOTE-2)
Eric Castillo, C
Yovanny Cuevas, OF(see NOTE-2)
Donnie Dewees, OF (see NOTE-2)
Scott Effross, RHP (see NOTE-2)
Taylor Gushue, C
Michael Hermosillo, OF (Article XX-D player) - no minor league options left
P. J. Higgins, C-INF (see NOTE-2)
Ben Holmes, LHP
Bryan Hudson, LHP (see NOTE-2)
Jake Jewell, RHP (Article XX-D player) - one minor league option left
Trevor Kelley, RHP (Article XX-D player) - two minor league options left
Ryan Lawlor, LHP (see NOTE-2)
Jose Lobaton, C (Article XIX-A player) - no minor league options left
Luis Lugo, LHP
Nick Martini, OF (Article XX-D player) - one minor league option left
Cameron Maybin, OF (Article XIX-A player) - no minor league options left
Trevor Megill (Article XX-D player - see NOTE-2) - three minor league options left
Ryan Meisinger, RHP (Article XX-D player) - two minor league options left
Ian Miller, OF (Article XX-D player) - three minor league options left
Jose Moreno, RHP
Adam Morgan, LHP (Article XIX-A player) - no minor league options left
Rafael Ortega, OF (Article XX-D player) - no minor league options left
Nicholas Padilla, RHP (see NOTE-2)
Tyler Payne, C (see NOTE-2)
C. D. Pelham, LHP (Article XX-D player - see NOTE-2) - two minor league options left
Raymond Pena, C (see NOTE-2)
Gustavo Polanco, C-1B (see NOTE-2)
Eury Ramos, RHP (see NOTE-2)
Andrew Romine, INF (Article XIX-A player) - no minor league options left
Aneuris Rosario, RHP (see NOTE-2)
D. J. Snelten, LHP (Article XX-D player) - two minor league options left
Robert Stock, RHP (Article XX-D player) - one minor league option left
Jerrick Suiter, RHP (ex-1B)
Joe Wieland, RHP (Article XX-D player) - no minor league options left
D. J. Wilson, OF (see NOTE-2)
Patrick Wisdom, 1B-3B (Article XX-D player) - one minor league option left
NOTE-1: Article XX-D means players can elect free-agency if sent outright to minors, and Article XIX-A means player must give his consent before he can be sent to minors by optional or outright assignment.
NOTE-2: Brooks, Camargo, Cuevas, Dewees, Effross, Higgins, Hudson, Lawlor, Megill, Padilla, Payne, Pelham, R. Pena, Polanco, E. Ramos, A. Rosario, and Wilson are eligible to be MLB Rule 55 minor league 6YFA for the first time post-2021, but only if the 2020 season is considered a "qualified season" toward minor league free-agency for those players. (Even though the 2020 minor league season was canceled before it began, the 2020 season - WAS - considered to be a "qualified season" for minor leaguers who were eligible to be Rule 55 minor league 6YFA for the first time post-2020). If the canceled 2020 minor league season is not considered to be a "qualified season" for players eligible to be Rule 55 minor league 6YFA post-2021, then those players will not be eligible to be free agents after the World Series, and will instead be eligible for selection in the 2021 Rule 5 Draft (if the player is still on a minor league reserve list as of 11/20).
SECOND CONTRACT MINOR LEAGUE PLAYERS (see NOTE-1 below)
Michael Arias, INF / RHP (previously released by TOR - see NOTE-2 below)
Aneudis Beard, RHP (previously released by TEX)
Juan Gamez, RHP (previously released by MIN)
Garrett Kelly, RHP (previously released by MIN)
Vance Vizcaino, OF (previously released by KC)
NOTE-1: With mutual consent (player & club), a second-contract minor league player who has accrued fewer than seven minor league seasons can be signed to a multi-year minor league contract with club control extending up through the player's seventh minor league season. So it is possible that one or more of the Cubs minor league second contract players are signed beyond the 2021 season (TBD).
NOTE-2: If he is signed beyond 2021, Michael Arias is - NOT - eligible foir selection in the 2021 Rule 5 Draft
tim815 16 min 7 sec ago (view)
MLB.com rated the Cubs 22 out of 30.
This season figures to tell quite a bit. No teams are terrible at player development anymore, and no teams look at the draft as a hopeless puzzle.
KingKongvsGodzilla 3 hours 30 min ago (view)
Are these guys out of the org now?
K Dub 8 hours 7 min ago (view)
PHIL: Any velo readings on Ramos? Earlier reports also had him sitting 98-99. Thanks!
George Altman 14 hours 7 min ago (view)
Phil, serious question: How good is the Cubs Player Development Department? Scale of 1 to 30 with 1 being best. I mean, I can think of 5 teams right now who don't have near the Cubs resources but do better year after.
I mean there are organizations across sports who seem to coach the crap out of their draft picks and signees. They just got 4 teenagers for Darvish, but do they have the coaches to get any of them to the show?
My pessimistic grade would be about 24.
Arizona Phil 14 hours 22 min ago (view)
DJL: How about Eddy Julio Martinez as a spectacular miss? A $3M signing bonus out of Cuba and he never made it out of AA.
Dolorous Jon Lester 14 hours 28 min ago (view)
Wow, that's a pretty spectacular miss. He was so highly thought of when he signed.
Arizona Phil 15 hours 1 min ago (view)
TIM: Richard Gallardo doesn't seem to be progressing as a SP, so he has apparently been moved to the bullpen. He has a tendency to labor through innings and nibble too much and throw a lot of pitches.
tim815 15 hours 14 min ago (view)
Anything on Gallardo, of interest, from today?
Arizona Phil 15 hours 16 min ago (view)
The Cubs have released LHP Ryan Kellogg, RHP Alex Moore, 3B Fidel Mejia, OF Jose Gutierrez, OF Eddy Julio Martinez, and OF Zac Taylor from Minor League Camp.
Arizona Phil 15 hours 22 min ago (view)
And despite what you might read elsewhere, It was - NOT - a "hot" gun.
Arizona Phil 15 hours 48 min ago (view)
He certainly could have forced the Cubs to release him with full salary as termination pay, so he must like it with the Cubs.
Charlie 17 hours 39 min ago (view)
Follow-up on last week's discussion of Baez's contact and plate discipline woes. Another Fangraphs article notes that he is among league leaders in combined positive change in zone swing rates (swinging at more pitches inside the strike zone) and reduction in chase rate (swinging at pitches outside the zone). See the last table: https://blogs.fangraphs.com/lets-look-at-some-earl...
This makes his 45% strikeout rate and 1.7% BB rate all the more strange.
crunch 20 hours 40 min ago (view)
he may not be worth much to us as fans, but every indication points to him being quite popular in the dugout. nice to see him stick around as an emergency callup catcher.
Wrigley Rat 1 day 9 hours ago (view)
Tony Wolters clears waivers and is sent to the Alternate Training site in South Bend.
bigsky33 1 day 13 hours ago (view)
Hi Phil, are they letting you into Sloan? Great to see your write-ups!!
crunch 1 day 17 hours ago (view)