Cubs 2021 Rule 5 Draft Roster Prep

11/29 UPDATE:

The Cubs have signed free-agent LHRP Locke St. John (ex-TEX) to a 2022 minor league contract and he has been assigned to the AAA Iowa reserve list, so the Cubs now have 76 players eligible for selection in next month's Rule 5 Draft (see full list below), and they have 170 players on their minor league Domestic Reserve List (twenty slots are open).

St. John is the second post-2021 Rule 9 6YFA signed by the Cubs (they signed OF Narciso Crook ten days ago), and he will almost certainly get an NRI to 2022 MLB Spring Training.   

If he were to be added to the MLB 40-man roster at some point, St. John has two minor league options left, and he is an Article XX-D player (he was outrighted to the minors previously in his careeer, so he can elect free-agency if he were to be outrighted after being added to the 40).

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11/23 UPDATE
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The Cubs have released LHP Chris Allen, 1B Shendrik Apostel, INF Widimer Joaquin, RHP Garrett Kelly, RHP Jorge Remon, and OF Vance Vizcaino.  

All six of the released players were 2021 Rule 5 Draft-eligible and were left off the AAA Iowa Reserve List when off-season rosters were filed last Friday. 

So 75 Cubs minor leaguers are now available for selection in the 2021 Rule 5 Draft (see full list below). 

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11/19 UPDATE

The Cubs have selected the contract of RHRP Ethan Roberts from AAA Iowa and the contract of OF Nelson Velazquez from AA Tennessee and they have been added to the Cubs MLB Reserve List (40-man roster), so there are now three slots open on the 40 in preparation for the 2021 MLB Rule 5 Draft on December 9th. 

The Cubs have also officially signed minor league 6YFA OF Narciso Crook (ex-CIN) to a 2022 minor league contract (see updated list of Cubs Rule 5 Draft-eligibles below).  

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ORIGINAL POST 11/8

The MLB Rule 5 Draft is held on the 2nd Thursday in December and is presently the last order of business at the MLB WINTER MEETINGS.

It is scheduled to take place on Thursday, December 9th in 2021. 

The Rule 5 Draft began almost 120 years ago, when the American League, National League, and the National Association (the minor leagues) agreed to establish a mechanism that permitted MLB clubs to select (draft) players off minor league reserve lists for a fixed price, and for minor league clubs to select (draft) players off the reserve lists of minor league clubs of a lower classification for a smaller fixed-price.  

So 120 years later there is a "Major League Phase" where an MLB club can select Rule 5 Draft-eligible players off the reserve lists of minor league clubs of any minor league classification (but in actual practice, MLB clubs draft players only from AAA reserve lists) for $100,000 (the "Major League Phase" Rule 5 Draft price increased from $50,000 to $100,000 beginning with the December 2016 draft), and a "AAA Phase" where a club's AAA affiliate can select Rule 5 Draft-eligible players who are on a minor league reserve list of a lower classification (below AAA) for $24,000 (the Rule 5 "AAA Phase" draft price increased from $12,000 to $24,000 beginning with the December 2016 draft).
NOTE: Effective December 2016, the "AA Phase" (where a club's AA minor league affiliate could select Rule 5 Draft-eligible players off the reserve lists of minor league clubs of a classification below AA for $4,000) has been eliminated.

There is no limit on the number of rounds in each phase (there could be one, there could be three, there could be five or more). As long as at least one club is still selecting players, the phase will continue, but as soon as all 30 teams have a full reserve list (so that clubs can no longer make selections) or have passed, the phase is over.

There is no limit on the number of Rule 5 Draft-eligible players any one organization can lose in a Rule 5 Draft.

Rule 5 Draft order is based upon the inverse order of winning percentages from the previous season. If the winning percentages of two or more clubs are the same, the club with the lowest winning percentage from the previous season picks first. If two or more clubs are still tied, league standings from two years back (or three years back, four years back, etc) are used to break the tie.
NOTE: The Cubs will have the #7 slot in the 2021 Rule 5 Draft (both in the Major League Phase and in the AAA Phase), which is the best Rule 5 Draft slot they have had since 2013. 

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RULE 5 DRAFT ELIGIBILITY

1. A minor league player who was 18 or younger on the June 5th immediately prior to signing his first contract is eligible for selection starting with 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.

2. If a player signs his first contract after the conclusion of the season of the MLB or minor league club to which he is first assigned (even if he signs prior to the Rule 5 Draft), the next season is considered to be the player's "first qualified season" for Rule 5 eligibility purposes. (Depending on the minor league, the conclusion of a minor league club's season could be as early as the first week of August, or as late as the second week of September).

3. A player eligible to be an MLB Rule 9 minor league free-agent who signs a minor league successor contract prior to being declared a free-agent and a free-agent with prior MLB and/or minor league service who signs a minor league contract prior to the Rule 5 Draft is eligible for selection 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 since he signed his first contract, or the player was 19 years or older on the June 5th immediately prior to signing his first contract and it is at least the 4th Rule 5 Draft since he signed his first contract.

4. Any player on a minor league reserve list who has either been released or had his contract voided and then re-signs with the same MLB organization within one year is eligible for selection.

5. Any player on a minor league reserve list who has been outrighted to the minors previously in his career is eligible for selection.

6. A player on the Voluntary Retired List, Disqualified List, or Ineligible List is not eligible for selection.

7. An MLB club can designate any player on a minor league reserve list "eligible for selection" in a Rule 5 Draft even if the player would not normally be eligible, but once a player is designated "eligible for selection," he remains eligible for selection in all subsequent Rule 5 drafts.
NOTE: A club might do this if the club is planning to release the player during the off-season. 

8. A minor league player-manager who would be eligible for selection in the Rule 5 Draft if he was only a player can be selected, but if he is selected, the player-manager can reject the selection and retire. He has 30 days to decide. If he rejects the selection and opts to retire as a player, the player-manager is ineligible to be reinstated as a player for a minimum of one year.  


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RULE 5 DRAFT RESTRICTIONS:

1. A minor league player eligible for selection in the Rule 5 Draft cannot be added to an MLB Reserve List (40-man roster), traded to another organization, or transferred from one minor league reserve list to another within the same organization, beginning with the filing of MLB minor league reserve lists on November 20th (or November 19th if November 20th falls on a Saturday or November 18th if November 20th falls on a Sunday) and extending through the completion of the Rule 5 Draft.

2. A Rule 5 Draft-eligible player cannot be sent outright to the minors beginning at 5 PM (Eastern) on the third day prior to the Rule 5 Draft through the conclusion of the draft.

3. A club must have as many slots open on its MLB Reserve List (40-man roster) prior to the start of the Rule 5 Draft as the number of players it selects in the Major League Phase, and an MLB club's AAA affiliate must have as many slots open on its reserve list prior to the start of the AAA Phase of the Rule 5 Draft as the number of players the affiliate selects in the AAA Phase. 

4. A club can select a player off the reserve list of one of its own minor league affiliates, but if the player is selected in the Major League Phase, the club is bound by the same Rule 5 roster restrictions as if it had selected the player off the reserve list of another club's minor league affiliate.
NOTE: This actually happened at least once a number of years ago, after a club (Atlanta Braves) inadvertently left one of its top prospects off its MLB Reserve List (40-man roster) when minor league reserve lists were submitted to the MLB Commissioner on November 20th.

5. A player eligible for selection in the Rule 5 Draft cannot be "covered up" from selection, either by agreement between two clubs or by effect (such as by concocting a phony injury and placing the player on an Injured List in an attempt to decrease a player's value when the player is not really injured). Also, a player selected in the Major League Phase of the Rule 5 Draft cannot be "hidden" on an Injured List to help the drafting club fulfill Rule 5 roster obligations (such as by leaving the player on the Injured List after he is healthy enough to play). If the MLB Commissioner believes a club "covered up" a player to avoid losing the player in the Rule Draft or "hid" a selected player on an Injured List, the offending club or clubs are subject to a penalty (TBD by the MLB Commissioner).


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RULE 5 DRAFT SELECTED PLAYER

A player selected in the Major League Phase of the Rule 5 Draft is called a "Selected Player." 

1. A Selected Player must be placed on the drafting club's MLB Reserve List (40-man roster) immediately after selection and must be tendered a major league contract by 5 PM (Eastern) on the day of the draft. 

2. A Selected Player can be traded at any time, but the player cannot be Designated for Assignment, released, or sent to the minors any earlier than 20 days prior to MLB Opening Day, and then only if Outright Assignment Waivers have been secured and the player's former club declines to reclaim the player.

3. If a Selected Player spends at least 90 days on an MLB Active List during the MLB regular season following selection, the player ceases to be a "Selected Player" at the conclusion of the MLB regular season. If time spent on an MLB Active List is less than 90 days in the season following selection, the player remains a Rule 5 Selected Player into the next season, and the player continues to be a Selected Player until he has spent 90 days total on an MLB Active List.

4. If a club wishes to send a Selected Player to the minors, the player must be placed on Outright Assignment Waivers, where any of the other 29 MLB clubs can claim the player for the $50,000 Rule 5 waiver price (formerly $25,000), and if claimed off waivers, the player continues to have Rule 5 MLB Selected Player status.

5. If the Selected Player is not claimed off Outright Assignment Waivers, the player then must be offered back to the club from which he was drafted, and the player's former club can re-claim the player for $50,000 (formerly $25,000), with the player being automatically outrighted to the Reserve List of the minor league reserve list from which he was drafted. The club from which the player was drafted usually has 72 hours to decide whether to re-claim the player, but it has only 24 hours to decide if the player is eligible to be an Article XX-D or Article XIX-A minor league free-agent if outrighted to the minors (player has accrued at least three years of MLB Service Time, qualifies for salary arbitration as a "Super Two" player, and/or has been outrighted to the minors previously in his career).
NOTE: A Selected Player with Article XIX-A rights (player has accrued at least five years of MLB Service Time) cannot be re-claimed and outrighted back to the minor league club from which he was drafted unless the player consents in advance to the assignment.

6. If a Selected Player is returned (outrighted) to the minor league club from which he was drafted, and if the player has accrued at least three years of MLB Service Time, qualifies for salary arbitration as a "Super Two" player, and/or has been outrighted to the minors previously in his career, the player can elect to be an MLB Article XX-D minor league free-agent (or Article XIX-A minor league free-agent if the player has accrued at least five years of MLB Service Time) after being outrighted (he has three days to decide), or he can accept the Outright Assignment and defer the right to be a minor league free-agent until after the conclusion of the MLB regular season.   

7. If a Selected Player is returned (outrighted) to the minor league club from which he was drafted, the drafting club is responsible for any portion of the player's salary above what the player was paid the previous season.

8. If the club from which the Selected Player was drafted declines to re-claim the player, the player no longer has Rule 5 Selected Player status, the drafting club retains the player, and the player can be sent to the minors or released.

9. A player selected in the AAA Phase of the Rule 5 Draft must be immediately assigned to the reserve list of the AAA club that drafted the player and he must be given a 15-day trial during Spring Training with that club, but the player can be assigned to the active list of any minor league affiliate in the MLB club's organization once the minor league regular season commences. Also, unlike players selected in the Major League Phase of the Rule 5 Draft, a player selected in the AAA Phase does not have to be offered back to the club from which he was drafted if the player is ultimately assigned to the active list of a minor league affiliate below AAA.

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2021 RULE 5 DRAFT 

A maximum of 38 players can be placed on the AAA reserve list on November 19th and be eligible for selection in the Major League Phase only, and in practice most clubs leave three or more slots open on their AAA reserve list when rosters are filed on 11/19 for free-agents who sign a minor league contract and players who are sent outright to AAA prior the Rule 5 Draft, and to provide AAA roster slots for players the Cubs might wish to select in the AAA Phase of the Rule 5 Draft (the Cubs typically select two or three players in the AAA Phase). 

At present the Cubs have five slots open on their MLB Reserve List (40-man roster), and while they could choose to roster as many as five Rule 5 Draft-eligible players, they probably will add only two or three. (Additional slots beyond the five presently open on the 40 that the Cubs might need for MLB free-agents and/or off-season waiver claims can be freed-up by non-tendering players on the MLB 40-man roster on December 2nd, but 12/2 is too late for Rule 5 Draft-eligible players who need to be rostered by 11/19). 

22-year old OF Nelson Velazquez (Cubs 2017 5th round draft pick out of PJ Education School in Carolina, Puerto Rico) will likely be the MVP of the Arizona Fall League and is a virtual lock to get added to the 40 by the 11/19 deadline, 24-year old RHRP Ethan Roberts (Cubs 2018 4th round draft pick - Tennessee Tech) is very likely to be added, and Cubs 2018 5th round pick (UVA) 24-year old INF Andy Weber (who is having a monster season in the AFL), Cubs 2017 1st round pick (SCF - Manatee-Sarasota) 25-year old LHRP Brendon Little (who was pitching in the AFL before being shut-down with an undisclosed injury last month), 22-year old fireballin' RHRP Danis Correa (2016 IFA signing out of Colombia, presently pitchng in the AFL), and 24-year old 6'8 LHRP Bryan Hudson (Cubs 2015 3rd round draft pick out of Alton HS in Alton, IL) -- who was eligible to be a post-2021 MLB Rule 9 minor league 6YFA before agreeing to sign a 2022 minor league successor contract -- are probably "on the bubble" to get added to the 40.   


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CUBS MINOR LEAGUERS ELIGIBLE FOR SELECTION IN 2021 RULE 5 DRAFT (last updated 11-29-2021): 

NOTE: Players in bold/ italics/ underlined on list below are the Cubs 2021 Rule 5 Draft-eligible players likely on the AAA 38-man reserve list, and Rule 5 Draft-eligible players on the AAA reserve list can be selected in the Major League Phase only ($100,000 draft price with the possibility that the player could be re-claimed later for $50,000), while players not on the AAA reserve list can be selected in the AAA Phase for $24,000 and with no possibility of re-claim.  

Jose Albertos, RHP 
Edmond Americaan, OF
D. J. Artis, OF
Javier Assad, RHP 
Cam Balego, C-INF
Aneudis Beard, RHP (second-contract player signed for 2022)
Andres Bonalde, LHP (second-contract player - on Restricted List) 
James Bourque, RHP (Article XX-D player - signed 2022 successor contract)
Craig Brooks, RHP (on Restricted List)
Jesus Camargo, RHP (on Restricted List)
Derek Casey, RHP
Erick Castillo, C (Article XX-D player - signed 2022 successor contract)  
Danis Correa, RHP
Narciso Crook, OF (ex-CIN post-2021 Rule 9 6YFA - signed 2022 minor league contract)
Yovanny Cruz, RHP 
Zach Davis, OF
Luis Devers, RHP 
Donnie Dewees, OF (signed 2022 successor contract)
Christian Donahue, INF 
Tyler Durna, 1B
Manuel Espinoza, RHP 
Jeremiah Estrada, RHP
Miguel Fabrizio, C-1B 
Kelvin Feliz, RHP
Edwin Figuera, INF (second contract player signed for 2022)
Reivaj Garcia, INF
Trent Giambrone, INF
Jose Miguel Gonzalez, RHP 
Ben Hecht, RHP 
Ben Holmes, LHP (signed 2022 successor contract)
Bryan Hudson, LHP
Brandon Hughes, LHP (ex-OF) 
Josue Huma, INF
Gabriel Jaramillo, RHP  
Levi Jordan, INF
Caleb Knight, C 
Austin Krzeminski, RHP (second contract player signed for 2022)
Brendon Little, LHP 
Dakota Mekkes, RHP
Eduarniel Nunez, RHP 
Carlos Ocampo, RHP
Nicholas Padilla, RHP (signed 2022 successor contract) 
Jack Patterson, LHP 
Tyler Payne, C (Article XX-D player - signed 2022 successor contract)
C. D. Pelham, LHP (Article XX-D player - signed 2022 successor contract)
Raymond Pena, C (signed 2022 successor contract)
Yonathan Perlaza, OF(ex-INF)  
Fabian Pertuz, INF 
Eury Ramos, RHP (signed 2022 successor contract)
Jake Reindl, RHP 
Peyton Remy, RHP 
Samuel Reyes, RHP 
Benjamin Rodriguez, RHP 
Luis Angel Rodriguez, LHP 
Aneuris Rosario, RHP (signed 2022 successor contract)
Cam Sanders, RHP 
Yeison Santana, INF
Carlos Sepulveda, INF (second contract player signed for 2022) 
Wyatt Short, LHP 
Jonathan Sierra, OF-1B
Jake Slaughter, INF-OF 
Locke St. John, LHP (Article XX-D player - ex-TEX post-2021 Rule 9 6YFA - signed 2022 minor league contract) 
Tyler Suellentrop, RHP (second contract player signed for 2022)
Tim Susnara, C (second contract player signed for 2022)
Matt Swarmer, RHP 
Riley Thompson, RHP 
Erich Uelmen, RHP 
Dauris Valdez, RHP
Didier Vargas, LHP
Luis Vazquez, INF 
Luis Verdugo, INF
Andy Weber, INF 
Harrison Wenson, C (second contract player signed for 2022)
Blake Whitney, RHP 
Jared Young, 1B-OF 
Delvin Zinn, INF 

Additionally, any player sent outright to the minors prior to the 2021 Rule 5 Draft and any free-agent who signs a 2022 minor league contract prior to the Rule 5 Draft will be eligible for selection 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.

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RULE 5 DRAFTS PAST 

Among the more-notable players selected by the Cubs in the Major League Phase of the Rule 5 Draft over the years are OF Hack Wilson (selected from New York Giants in 1925), C Bob Scheffing (selected from the St. Louis Cardinals in 1940), RHP Johnny Klippstein (selected frrom Brooklyn Dodgers in 1949), RHP Turk Lown (selected from Brooklyn Dodgers in 1951), OF Jim King (selected from the St. Louis Cardinals in 1954), INF Johnny Goryl (selected from the Baltimore Orioles in 1955), OF Monte Irvin (selected from the New York Giants in 1955), C Cal Neeman (selected from the New York Giants in 1956), 2B Tony Taylor (selected from the San Francisco Giants in 1957), SS Jose Arcia and C Bill Plummer (both selected from the St. Louis Cardinals in 1967), OF Cleo James (selected from the Los Angeles Dodgers in 1969), LHP Willie Hernandez (selected from the Philadelphia Phillies in 1976), C Jody Davis (selected from the St. Louis Cardinals in 1980), RHP Rodney Myers (selected from the Kansas City Royals in 1995), OF Josh Hamilton (selected from the Tampa Bay Devil Rays and then traded to the Cincinnati Reds in a pre-arranged deal immediately after the draft concluded in 2006), RHP Hector Rondon (selected from the Cleveland Indians in 2012), and RHP Trevor Megill (selected from the San Diego Padres in 2019), and probably the most-notable Cubs minor leaguers lost in the Major League Phase of the Rule 5 Draft are 2B Eddie Mayo (selected by the Philadelphia Athletics in 1942), INF Billy Klaus (selected by the Boston Braves in 1949), RHP Billy Muffett (selected by the St. Louis Cardinals in 1955), OF Jason Dubois (selected by the Toronto Blue Jays in 2002 but then later re-claimed by Cubs), LHP Andy Sisco (selected by the Kansas City Royals in 2004), RHP Randy Wells (selected by the Toronto Blue Jays in 2007 but then later re-claimed by the Cubs), LHP Donnie Veal (selected by the Pittsburgh Pirates in 2008), INF Ryan Flaherty (selected by the Baltimore Orioles in 2011), INF-OF Marwin Gonzalez (selected by the Boston Red Sox and then traded to the Houston Astros immediately after the draft concluded in 2011), RHP Michael Rucker (selected by the Baltimore Orioles in 2019 but then later re-claimed by the Cubs), and INF Vimael Machin (selected by the Philadelphia Phillies and then traded to the Oakland A's immediately after the draft concluded in 2019). 
NOTE: Hack Wilson and Monte Irvin, (both selected by the Cubs - see above) and RF Roberto Clemente (selected by the Pittsburgh Pirates from the Brooklyn Dodgers in the 1954 Rule 5 Draft) are the only members of the Baseball Hall of Fame who were selected in a Rule 5 Draft.

The Cubs have actually lost many more players in the AAA Phase of the Rule 5 Draft (most-notably 1B Justin Bour, who was selected by the Miami Marlins from the Cubs AA Tennessee affiliate in 2013) than they have in the Major League Phase over the past few years, a testament to the depth of their farm system. They are likely to lose a few more players in the AAA Phase of the Rule 5 Draft this year as well.

The most-notable players selected by the Cubs in the AAA Phase of the Rule 5 Draft over the years are C Vic Roznovsky (selected by the Cubs from the San Francisco Giants AA El Paso affiliate in 1963), C Chris Krug (selected by the Cubs from the St. Louis Cardinals AA Tulsa affiliate in 1964), OF Brock Davis (selected by the Cubs from the Houston Astros AA Dallas-Ft. Worth affiliate in 1968), RHP Heathcliff Slocumb (selected by the Cubs from the New York Mets Little Falls affiliate in the NYP league in 1986), and OF Roosevelt Brown (selected by the Cubs from the Florida Marlins AA Portland affiliate in 1997).    

Comments

slew of cubs news...

d.bote (shoulder surgery) will need 6-ish months to recover and will most likely be delayed to start the season.

b.wieck is fully recovered from his heart procedure in august and will be ready to go for 2022.

minor leaguer b.marquez is expected to be ready for spring training with no limitations.  he missed 2021 with left shoulder isses (he's a lefty).  he pitched part of 1 game in 2020 and only pitched a little over 100 innings in 2019.  he'll be 23 in january, so he's still got youth on his side.

...on the negative side of things, b.little has a non-surgical (for now) left elbow injury and he's been shut down.  he'll be re-evaluated in a few weeks.

Definitely good news on Wieck and Marquez. Having that happen to Little when he was seemingly so close to a 40 man spot at last sucks.

As for Bote... as a person I hope he's alright. I think he isn't important baseball-wise, though.

the past couple seasons, especially last season, bote has been a whole lot of meh.

i was hoping he could be a 3rd/2nd placido polanco type (with a touch more power) and make his contract with 2 team options a hell of a deal.

he's got 3y/12m left before his option years come up.

I think is AAV against the CBT is 3.0M/Yr.

caleb kilian gets the start for the East in the AFL Fall Stars game tonight.

the 2 other cubs, andy weber (2nd) and nelson velazquez (RF) are both in the starting lineup.

Caleb Kilian went two innings, gave up three hits, two walks, two earned runs, and struck out four. The first three hitters of the game reached and then Kilian seemed to settle in a bit. Stuff looked okay, but these All Star hitters were the best of the best!

Andy Weber and Nelson Velazquez were 0-for-the-game. Weber did a great job of ensuring he doesn't get drafted in the Rule 5 Draft - made an error on a soft chopper & a had a bunch of weak outs at bat. Velazquez looked like he was looking for FB mistakes but these pitchers didn't make any.

Cubs sign outfielder Narciso Crook. Corner guy with some speed and pop.

The Cubs have protected Nelson Velazquez and Ethan Roberts.

glad that ethan roberts got protected.  he's a very intelligent pitcher.  if he had more velocity he'd be a lot more attractive in rankings (and if he was a starter), but if he had more velocity he may not approach his game the way he does.

in a world where everyone's pen has like 5 guys throwing mid-high 90s, he could be sneaky good even if not a closer type.

CRUNCH: Although he doesn't have elite velo, the Ethan Roberts FB and breaking ball have some of the top raw spin rates in the system, and clubs see spin as a "pitch tool" that can't be taught but can be refined. 

It's always a bit tricky to predict who might get selected in the Major League Phase of the MLB Rule 5 Draft, because unlike the MLB Rule 4 First-Year Player Draft where there is usually a general consensus among scouts as to who the best HS and college players are, all it takes is one club to like a particular player for that player to get selected in the Rule 5 Draft. 

A club might have scouted the player in HS or in college or in the Dominican or in Venezuela and has always liked him, or maybe one of your minor league managers saw the guy play or pitch up close & personal in games and remembers him as being better than others who haven't seen him first-hand, or maybe there is a coach or another player in your organization who knows a lot about a certain player and gives a very favorable report. You just never know. 

But there are several important things to remember about the Rule 5 Draft: 

1. It is better to lose a player in the Major League Phase of the Rule 5 Draft for $100,000 with better than a 50/50 chance that you will have a chance to later re-claim the player for $50,000 (so that's a $50,000 profit - AND - you get the player back!), than it is to add a player to the MLB 40-man roster and then find out later you need his slot on the 40 and you end up losing him off waivers for $50,000 with no chance to re-claim him later. It is a very delicate balance that requires careful consideration, weighing whether you will have a chance to re-claim the player later if he is selected, or if you maybe feel that getting $100K for that particular player is actually good value (you can make two waiver claims for $100K!).    

2. A player may have more value to another club even as a Rule 5 pick with roster restrictions than he would have to your club if you had added him to the 40. 

EXAMPLE: LHRP Brandon Hughes 

Brandon Hughes was a two-way player (OF / LHP) in college at Michigan State, and he even led the Big Ten in stolen bases one year. He's a decent defensive OF who can play LF-CF-RF, but he can also pitch - AND - PR (and maybe steal a base in a tight game), so his value as a Rule 5 player on an MLB 26-man roster is better than most because he can do  other things besides pitch 

And with the 13-man pitcher limit likely to finally become a reality in 2022, where a club must designate a player as either a "pitcher" or as a "position player" (or with very tight conditions, as a "two-way player" who does not count against the 13-man pitcher limit) prior to start of the season, a club could select Hughes in the Rule 5 Draft, designate him as a "position player" on MLB Opening Day, but still be able to use him as a pitcher in extra-inning games or in blow-outs (players on the MLB active list roster who are designated as a "position player" will be allowed to pitch only in an extra inning game or in a game where his club is ahead or behind by at least six runs, which is probably the only times you would actualy want to use a pitcher who was selected on the Rule 5 Dtaft!). 

3. Normally a pitcher on an MLB 40-man roster can go on a minor league rehab assignment for a maximum of 30 days, but a pitcher who is rehabbing from an elbow UCL transplant (Tommy John Surgery) can spend up to - 60 DAYS - on a minor league rehab asignment. (this - ONLY - applies to a TJS rehab)

So if a club selects a pitcher in the Major League Phase of the Rule 5 Draft who is rehabbing from Tommy John Surgery, the club can place the pitcher on the MLB 60-day IL on the first day of Spring Training (the day pitchers & catchers report), assign the pitcher to minor league Extended Spring Training through June, then send the player on a 60-day minor league rehab asignment at whatever minor league level is appropriate for him in July and August, and then reinstate him from the 60-day IL on September 1st when MLB active list rosters will expand from 26 to 28 and the maximum number of pitchers expands from 13 to 14. And then the pitcher can be designated by the club as a "position player," so that he can be used only in blow-outs or in extra uinnings (which is probably the only times you would want a Rule 5 Draft pick to pitch).  

And then in 2023 the pitcher would only need to spend another 60 days on the drafting club's MLB active list roster (again, designated as a "position player") before Rule 5 restrictions are removed and he can be optioned to the minors to whatever level is appropriate for him, and then he would get - FOUR - minor league option years starting in 2023. (If a Rule 5 Selected Player spends time on an MLB IL In his Rule 5 selected player season, he only needs to spend 90 days on the MLB active list roster for Rule 5 restrictions to be removed, but if he is still short of the minimum 90 days by the end of the Rule 5 selected season, he would remain a Rule 5 Selected Player into the next season and can make up the remaining days needed to reach the 90 days in that next season).   

4. Sometimes there is a position player or a pitcher far away from MLB who is projected as having an MLB  ceiling even if he is not anywhere near ready for The Show, and the club wants to find out if the player can maybe develop without getting regular innings or playing time for an entire season. Very few young guys can do it, but every now & then somebody does. 

EXAMPLES: RHRP Danis Correa, RHSP Luis Devers, and OF Yonathan Perlaza 

Correa's FB sits in the upper 90's and his breaking ball shows promise but he has not pitched above single-A, Devers is a plus-pitchability SP prospect with outstanding command of a 2SFB / CV / CH combo who only just reached Lo-A at the end of the 2021 minor league season but who then wowed scouts at Instructs, and Perlaza is a switch-hitting bat-first corner OF (ex-INF) or maybe a DH who along with Owen Caissie, Felix Stevens, James Triantos Jr, and Nelson Velazquez, has one of the top five average exit-velocities in the Cubs system.  

5. Somebody is MLB-ready or very close to being MLB ready (TBD) and so he could actually maybe be a useful player or pitcher on an MLB active list right away. 

EXAMPLES: INF Andy Weber, RHRP Dakota Mekkes, LHRP Bryan Hudson, RHSP/RP Cam Sanders, 1B-OF Jared Young, RHRP Dauris Valdez, and INF Levi Jordan 

These guys aren't great prospects but they do have some MLB upside and might be able to hold their own in MLB in 2022 (would have to be evaluated in Spring Training, so it's a gamble).     

6. The kind of guys you would probably want to avoid selecting in the Major League Phase of the Rule 5 Draft are injured non-TJS rehab pitchers (like LHRP Brendon Little and RHSP Riley Thompson) where you don't know exactly what his injury is or you know what it is but you don't know the extent of it. You don't want to select a pitcher in the Rule 5 Draft and then end up having to pay him the MLB minimum salary (about $600K) for a year while he is on the 60-day IL and also have to pay for his surgery and then he can't pitch for another year or two after that, during which time he must remain a Rule 5 Selected Player.

7. What you absolutely do not want to do is fail to add a pitcher or position player to the 40 before the Rule 5 Draft, and then end up losing somebody who subsequently becomes a rotation SP, a high-leverage RP, or a position player starter or other useful position player who generally cannot be replaced by waiver claim. That's why self-scouting and knowing your organization really well matters a lot.

That's sort of what happened with Epstein-Hoyer when they took over the Cubs ten years ago and lost Marwin Gonzalez and Ryan Flaherty in the Rule 5 Draft and traded D. J. LeMahieu. They really didn't know the orgaozation well enough to make informed decisions, and it cost them.  

With new Cubs GM Carter Hawkins coming over from Cleveland, and with the Cubs having three slots open on the 40, and with the Guardians having DFA'd seven guys yesterday, I wouldn't be too surprised if the Cubs make a waiver claim or two involving one or more of the Cleveland DFAs, like maybe corner OF Harold Ramirez, LHSP Scott Moss, RHSP J. C. Mejia, RHRP Justin Garza, and/or LHRP Kyle Nelson.   

Ramirez and Mejia are out of minor league options (and Ramirez wil be eligible for salary arbitrationas a "super two"), so if they claim either or both of them the Cubs would probably want to non-tender the player on 12/2 and then (hopefully) re-sign him to a minor league contract, preferably after the conclusion of the Rule 5 Draft. 

Moss, Garza, and Nelson do have minor league options available and have absolutely no off-season outright assignment restrictions, so the Cubs could claim them and then just put them back on waivers again seven days later, hoping to outright them to AAA.  

These are the Cubs "on the bubble" guys most-likely to get non-tendered oi 12/2 to avoid the possibility of player later getting claimed off waivers, and if non-tendered, the Cubs would (hopefully) be able to re-sign the player to a 2022 minor league contract.  

1. Michael Hermosillo - He is a Draft-Excluded Player so he can't be outrighted until mid-March, and he is out of minor league options so he can't be optioned to the minors out of Spring Training, and he can elect free-agency if he eventually is outrighted. He is the "poster boy" for a non-tender candidate. 

2. Sergio Alcantara - He is out of minor league options so he can't be optioned to the minors out of Spring Training, and he can elect free-agency if he eventually is outrighted. 

3. Brad Wieck - He is out of minor league options so he cannot be optioned to the minors out of Spring Training. He also is recovering from September heart surgery, although he has reportedly been cleared for full activity. He does - NOT - have the right to elect frree-agency if he is outrighted and there are no restrictions  for him as far as outright assignment is concerned.   

4-5. Michael Rucker & Trevor Megill - They can be outrighted at any time and they have minor league options available if they don't make the Opening Day roster out of Spring Training, but they both have the right to elect free-agency if outrighted.  

6. Jason Adam - He is a Draft-Excluded Player so he cannot be outrighted until mid-March, but otherwise he will have no option or outright resrtctions coming out of Spring Training and he cannot elect free-agency if he is outrighted, although Cubs might not want to expose him to waivers - IF - they anticipate that his roster slot might be needed.  

7-8. Tommy Nance and Greg Deichmann -  No outright or option restrtictions here, but player's 40-man roster slot might be needed later in off season for FA signing and Cubs might not want to expose player to waivers - IF - they anticipate player's roster slot might be needed.

Although Adbert Alzolay, Alec Mills, and Rafael Ortega are out of minor league options, Alzolay will absolutely be tendered a contract, Mills will almost certainly be tendered, and Ortega will very likely be tendered (though not a lock for Ortega). 

n.velazquez wins AFL MVP.

.385/.480/.712 with 9 homers in 104ab

Top 15 Cubs first-time Rule 5 Draft-eligibles post-2022 (that is, after NEXT season) will be: 

1. Brennon Davis, OF 
2. Caleb Kilian, RHSP 
3. Kevin Alcantara, OF 
4. Ryan Jensen, RHSP 
5. Kohl Franklin, RHSP 
6. Cole Roederer, OF 
7. Yohendrick Pinango, OF 
8. Chris Clarke, RHSP 
9. Richard Gallardo, RHSP 
10. Michael McAvene, RHSP 
11. Chase Strumpf, INF 
12. Cayne Ueckert, RHRP 
13. Darius Hill, OF
14. Bryce Ball, 1B  
15. Nelson Maldonado, 1B 

The above list does not include players who are Rule 5-draft eligible this year and will be again next year, like Brendon Little, Riley Thompson, Danis Correa, Jared Young, Andy Weber, Brandon Hughes, Cam Sanders, Jeremiah Estrada, Eduarniel Nunez, Yovanny Cruz, and Jack Patterson.  

First-time Cubs Rule 9 minor league 6YFA post-2022 of note will include: 

1. Yonathan Perlaza, OF 
2. Dakota Mekkes, RHRP 
3. Dauris Valdez, RHRP 
4. Matt Swarmer, RHSP 
5. Trent Giambrone, INF 
6. Delvin Zinn, INF 
7. Carlos Ocampo, RHRP  
8. Zach Davis, OF 
9. Javier Assad, RHSP 
10. Wyatt Short, LHRP 

The above list does not include players who were eligible to be a minor league 6YFA post-2021 but signed a 2022 minor league successor contract, and will be a Rule 9 minor league 6YFA again post-2022, like Bryan Hudson, Eury Ramos, Nicholas Padilla, Donnie Dewees, and C. D. Pelham. 

AzPhil,

Does it make sense for Kevin Alcantara to be Rule 5 eligible?

I know after 2022 he'll have been under contract for four seasons. And, I know that 2020 still counts even though there was no season. But, he'd be 20 years old. The Cubs have to put him on the 40 to protect him at 20 yrs old?

childersb3: If you mean it's too bad that Kevin Alcantara will be Rule 5 Draft-eligible post-2022, then yes, I guess it is. But barring a change in the new CBA, Alcantara will be Rule 5 Draft-eligible post-2022, and unless he suffers a career-threatening injury or has an absolutely abysmal year at Myrtle Beach in 2022, the Cubs almost certainly will add him to the 40 this time next year. He is one of the Cubs Top 10 prospects, and you don't leave a healthy organizational Top 10 prospect (who could be an MLB Top 100 prospect next season) available for selection in the Rule 5 Draft, no matter how young he is.

However, if Alcantara is added to the 40 post-2022, he will get a 4th minor league option year (in 2026), so he will not need to be rushed. It's just that he will take up a spot on the 40 when he is nowhere near MLB-ready. 

Something very similar happened with OF Alexander Canario, acquired by the Cubs from the San Francisco Giants in the Kris Bryant trade. 

Canario was signed by the Giants as an IFA J-2 16-year old in July 2016, and so he was first-time Rule 5 Draft-eligible post-2020 when he was only 20 years old, and despite not having played above short-season ball. He also had suffered a shoulder injury that required surgery after making a diving catch in an Instructs game versus the Cubs at Sloan Park in October 2020, but the Giants added him to their MLB 40-man roster last November anyway.

And just like Alcantara will get a 4th minor league option year if he is added to the 40 post-2022, Canario will get a 4th minor league option in 2024. And because Canario has four minor league option years, the Giants weren't pressured to rush him and so they optioned him to Lo-A San Jose coming out of Spring Training this past season. (The Cubs moved him up to Hi-A South Bend after the trade, but they could have just as easily moved him laterally to Lo-A Myrtle Beach, if they had wanted to do that).   

Again, the problem with guys like Canario and Alcantara is that they are too valuable to be left exposed in the Rule 5 Draft, but they are also so far away from MLB that they occupy a 40-man roster slot that can't be used to shuttle a player back & forth between AAA and the big club during the season. 

This is going to be a contiuning problem for the Cubs going forward as more & more of their best prospects become Rule 5 Draft-eligible when they are nowhere near MLB ready. It really puts a crimp on in-season roster management. 

The Cubs will likely have a lot more roster protection decisions next year than they did this year.  

Right now, Brennon Davis, Caleb Kilian, Kevin Alcantara, Ryan Jensen, and Kohl Franklin, plus probably Yonathan Perlaza (who is eligible to be a first-time minor league FA post-2022), and maybe Bryan Hudson (who will once again be eligible to be a minor league FA post-2022) are the Cubs minor leaguers most-likely to be added to the 40 prior to the 11-18-2022 deadline, and that doesn't even include 2021 Rule 5 Draft-eligible pitchers who were injured in 2021, like Riley Thompson, Jack Patterson, Yovanny Cruz, Brendon Little, and Jeremiah Estrada. 

There is no other Cubs site that provides this type if insight and analyzation of Roster rules and construction. Thank you, AZ Phil and all those who make this site possible. I don't even check Cubs.com every day like I do The Cub Reporter.

BTW, the pre-Rule 5 Draft roster filing deadline next year wil be Friday November 18th, because November 20 falls on a Sunday. 

The 4th option helps. I guess I was speaking to the CBA forcing these guys to the 40man so quickly. But, I'm sure that acceleration helps drive up salaries eventually. 

cubs aquired harold ramirez from CLE for long time journeyman "cash considerations"

technically he can play all 3 OF slots, realistically he's not good at any of the slots.

Cash amount was likely $100,000 (equal to the Rule 5 Draft price or double the $50,000 waiver price). 

Again, Ramirez is out of minor league options, he can elect free-agency if he is outrighted, and he will be eligible for salary arbitration as a "Super Two."  

When you add in the arb-eligibility, that's gotta make Ramirez a real contender for Hermosillo's "non-tender poster boy" title

DSJ: Exactly. Even though he was just acquired in a trade, the Cubs still might opt to non-tender Ramirez on 12/2, that is, as long as he goes along with the plan. I doubt that the Cubs would non-tender him if he declines (in advance) to sign a 2022 minor league contract.  

doug jones (cubs for a half season in 1996) has died from COVID complications, 64 years old.

Miguel Amaya to have Tommy John surgery. Will likely miss most of next season. (I speculate that he could maybe DH a bit in the second half and throw towards August.)

Arizona Phil. Would Amaya, as a catcher, be eligible for the TJS exemption?

TIM: Yes, except a position player only gets a maximum of 20 days on a minor league injury rehab assignment, so the 30 extra days allowed for a position player rehabbing from TJS would mean a maximum of 50 days, whereas it would be a maximum of 60 days for a pitcher (the original 30 days that pitchers get plus the additional 30 days in the form of three 10-day increments). And this also only applies to players on an MLB IL. 

Keep in mind that a player on an MLB IL must consent to a minor league injury rehab assignment, including the additional 30 days (in the form of three ten-day increments to which the player must consent every ten days) for TJS rehabbers.

However, a player who can be optioned to the minors (that is, a player with a "usable" option) will almost always consent to a minor league rehab assignment if they know that the alternative would be getting optioned to the minors, because a player on a minor league rehab assignment gets paid at the Major League split rate and also accrues MLB Service Time (and gets MLB meal money, too!) while he is on a minor league injury rehab assignment. 

In the case of Miguel Amaya, because he did not accrue any MLB Service Time in 2021, has not yet accrued at least three years of MLB Service Time, and was not selected in the immediately preceding Rule 5 Draft, he can be optioned to the minors  - EVEN IF HE IS INJURED OR REHABBING FROM AN INJURY - up until 15 days prior to MLB Opening Day, so it is unlikely that the Cubs would place him on their MLB 60-day IL unless they absolutely need his 40-man roster slot, because if he is placed on the MLB 60-day IL he would be paid at the MLB rate (about $600K pro-rated versus about $100K pro-rated) - AND - he would accrue MLB Service Time. 

That might matter if 2022 is Amaya's last option year, but he already is getting a 4th minor league option in 2023, but that's only if if he uses his 3rd option in 2022, so there is no reason to try and preserve an Amaya option year in 2022 because either way he will get one in 2023. Therefore, I would expect him to get optioned to AA Tennessee or AAA Iowa on or before the 15th day prior to 2022 MLB Opening Day, and then be placed on a minor league IL on minor league full-season Opening Day in April. (Again, unless the Cubs absolutely, positively need his 40-man roster slot for another player).   

BTW, Miguel Amaya isn't the only player on the Cubs MLB 40-man roster who can be optioned to the minors up until 15 days prior to 2022 MLB Opening Day even if he is injured or rehabbing from an injury. There are actually seven more!... Alexander Canario, Anderson Espinoza, Brailyn Marquez, Christopher Morel, Ethan Roberts, Nelson Velazquez, and Alexander Vizcaino.  

As you probably know, Roberts and Velazquez are Draft-Excluded Players, which means they cannot be sent to the minors (optioned or outrighted) any earlier than 20 day prior to 2022 MLB Opening Day, so if Roberts and/or Velazquez are injured during the 2021-22 off-season or during Spring Training, they can be optioned (or outrighted) to the minors only during the five-day period between 20 days prior to 2022 MLB Opening Day (the first day a Draft-Excluded Player can be sent to the minors) and 15 days prior to MLB Opening Day (the last day an injured player who did not acrue any MLB Service Time the previous season can be sent to the minors)  

well...that's one hell of a forearm strain.

W-RAT: Of all the TJS rehab types, a catcher TJS rehab is probably most similar to a pitcher's because of the laser pinpoint rifle throws a catcher needs to make to 2nd base.

So I would expect Amaya will be able to DH by mid-season (hitting shouldn't be a problem by then), and then (hopefully) be able to throw normally in games (as a catcher) at post-season Instructs and then maybe in the AFL, with 2023 Spring Training being when he should be 100%. 

And then as I mentioned in another comment, Amaya will get a 4th minor league option in 2023 if he uses his 3rd in 2022, otherwise if he doesn't use his 3rd minor league option in 2022 (if he is placed on the MLB 60-day IL instead) he would have his 3rd minor league option available in 2023, and the 4th minor league option will be available in 2024 (but - ONLY - if he doesn't accrue at least 90 days on a minor league and/or MLB active list roster in both 2022 and 2023), so a 4th minor league option being available in 2024 if he spends the entire 2022 season on the Cubs MLB 60-day IL and spends his 3rd minor league option in 2023 is TBD. 

Also, Justin Steele gets a 4th minor league option in 2022 (must be used in 2022). 

w.franco (rays) extend 11y/185m

not bad for a guy with 1/10th of a season service time.

The Cubs have released LHP Chris Allen, 1B Shendrik Apostel, INF Matt Burch, INF Widimer Joaquin, RHP Garrett Kelly, RHP Marco Prieto,  RHP Jorge Remon, RHP Dawel Rodriguez, and OF Vance Vizcaino, so the off-season Cubs Minor League Domestic Reserve List is now at 169 (21 slots are open).  

Six of the nine players who were released (Allen, Apostel, Joaquin, Kelly, Remon, and Vizcaino) were Rule 5 Draft-eligible, and all six had been left off the Iowa Reserve List when rosters were filed last Friday. 

With Amaya's 2022 year as a catcher essentially an non-factor and Robinson Chirinos and Austin Romaine again free agents, It looks like any rumors of moving Willson Contreras will go quiet. At least Chirinos could hit (for a backup catcher). 

AZ Phil: what are your thoughts about the current state of the Cubs minor league catching? Also who do you favor for the list of usual suspects for backup position to Contreras. It seems Jed Hoyer has said out loud that Willson would have a better offensive season if he weren't overused from the catching position. I'm sure David Ross must think this as well.  In 2021, they just couldn't keep a backup catcher healthy. 

CUBSTER: Unless you consider Erick Castillo and Tyler Payne as legit contenders to be the Cubs back-up catcher in 2022, the Cubs have no catcher who is projected to eventually play in MLB anywhere near MLB ready.

I would expect the Cubs will eventually re-sign Robinson Chirinos to a 2022 minor league contract with an NRI to Spring Training, and as things stand right now he would almost certainly get the back-up job (mostly by defauil), but I cannot believe that the Cubs did not claim Pedro Severino off waivers from the Orioles earlier this month when Baltimore outrighted him to AAA (he is an Article XX-D player, so he elected free-agency after being outrighted). 

Severino was the Orioles #1 catcher in 2021 and under club control for two more seasons, albeit salary arbitration eligible. But then, Harold Ramirez is salary arbitration eligible ("super two"), too.

So then Severino becomes a FA and signed a one-year deal for $1.9M with the Brewers a couple of days ago. 

Severino is only 28 years old and would have been an ideal back-up catcher for the next two years, and the Cubs still could have traded Contreras (presumably for a younger close-to-being-MLB-ready catcher).  

Not that TJS is ever necessarily a good thing, but taking a year off from catching could give Miguel Amaya a chance to work on his hitting.

His glove & arm were probably a year ahead of his bat coming into 2021, so once he gets going again hopefully he will be able to spend a significant part of his rehab working in the cages. 

Also, although he won't be able to throw for a while, he should be able to work on his receiving during the summer, once he is cleared to resume non-throwing baseball activities.  

Lefty Matz to Cardinals. 4/44. 

every other team: hey, we're signing and trading players!

cubs: we had a college football game recently at wrigley and the betting sportsbook we're building at the park is starting to come along nicely.  you guys got money?  we'd like to have some.  want to bet on something?  watch a concert?  maybe stay at the hotel?

seriously, though...cubs are at least linked to m.stroman, but there is 0 indication how strong the link is vs the other teams who have spoken publically.

there's no cubs convention this year because no one wants to take accountability over this off-season, i mean covid, so they're going to have to give interviews to indicate what's going on with the club aside from further monitizing wrigley field.

Wick misses Super Two status by two days.

Thank goodness, a few extra hundred k in Tom's pockets

cubs weren't linked heavily, but m.semien is off the board to the rangers...7/175m

trevor story seems to be the most cubs-linked middle IF'r, but i havent heard anything about story/cubs in weeks.

...and that was fake.

you can't even rely on a blue checkmark account anymore on twitter.  thanks world.

okay, that was a real account (blue check) who retweeted someone they thought was real.  this is inception-level internet stupidity and the account he re-tweeted is now disabled.

Hey, Jed didn't lie. He said this wasn't a rebuild.

Flurries of activity and Cubs crickets.

BuT wE'rE tRyInG tO cOmPeTe!

Just depends on what your definition of "being competitive" means.  Technically the Cubs (barring a strike) will be "competing" against other baseball teams and therefore will "be competitive".  

That's a good way of looking at it. The race for the top draft pick is a pretty hardcore competition, too.

hey, they're working hard as hell.

just last week tom ricketts and other chicago sports team owners went out of their way to respond to a Tribune article calling sports betting lounges "casinos" by co-authoring a letter to the paper.

DraftKings being happy seems to be the cubs #1 offseason priority.

STOP THE PRESSES! They signed someone. Some random lefty RP named Locke St.John.

Sounds like a Bond villain.

Taylor Davis might be next.

The violinist or the camera staring afficionado?

both are equally useful to a baseball team.

m.scherzer mets 3/130m (wow)

that's more than the entire payroll for PIT last season per year and only a bit less than what BAL, CLE, and MIA paid out.

BA released their top-10 cubs prospects list...

1. Brennen Davis

2. Cristian Hernandez

3. Brailyn Marquez

4. Pete Crow-Armstrong

5. Jordan Wicks

6. Kevin Alcantara

7. Caleb Kilian

8. Owen Caissie

9. DJ Herz

10. Yohendrick Pinango

reggie preciado got robbed.

c.seager goes to TEX for 10/325.

they've committed to spend 1/2 billion this week (marcus semien added, too).

meanwhile, the cubs complained to the local paper about how their new multi-million dollar sports betting lounge isn't a casino and they sent out a "cyber monday" ad to offer the great deal of it costing nothing to get on the season tickets waiting list.

it already is and will continue to be a hell of a 24 hours.  maybe the cubs will *shrug* i dunno...do something worth talking about.

Texas has a wildly expensive middle infield. They've also set the market really high for the remaining SS. And they did it single handedly.

corey seager signed a deal for 32.5m a year and that means carlos correa is having a really great day.

Have to admit that as someone that now lives in Texas and enjoys baseball in general (not just Cubs), will likely head to DFW instead of Houston this summer to get my baseball fix.  New stadium, some exciting new players.  Guess that covers $100 of those millions they just spent.

I figured the Rangers would make a Jason Werth type of signing this offseason.  Overpay to bring in a big time free agent that signals that the organization is transitioning from rebuilding to trying to be competive.  Didn't expect them to double down on it. 

j.baez to DET....6/140m

cubs are obviously in the market for a SS, especially since hoerner has been put on notice he could be a ultility player in 2022.  it's looking a lot like trevor story time unless he gets priced out.

not too stoked on his bat, but his glove is solid.

CRUNCH: I would be very surprised if the Cubs sign anyone with a QO attached, so that rules out Story and Correa. I could see the Cubs maybe acquiring Didi Gregorius from the Phillies as a Phillie salary dump if the Phils sign Correa or Story. Then the Cubs could flip Gregorius at the trade deadline. Gregorius is signed thru 2022 at about $14M. Gregorius could end up back with the Yankees for a year under a similar scenario. 

The Cardinals are a team that might be a fit for Story, with the Cards then maybe trading DeJong for a mid-level prospect to at least partially offset the forfeited draft pick. Story and Arenado were long-time teammates in Colorado and Story seems like the type of player the Cardinals like.   

Or the Nationals might sign Carlos Correa as a way to prove to Juan Soto that they are serious about being a contender for the next decade.

Otherwise, both Story and Correa could very well return to their 2021 teams and then try FA again this time next year, when they wouldn't have a QO attached. 

Another trade that could happen is SS Isiah Kiner-Falefa and a nowhere-near MLB-ready but still Top 10 pitching prospect or two to the Reds for one of their SPs (Castillo or Gray). Kyle Hendricks (who was originally drafted and signed by the Rangers) might be another potential SP trade target for Texas. The Rangers really, really need a couple more legit MLB SPs if they are serious about being a contender in 2022.  

yan gomes 2/13m cubs.

contreras trade watch underway...maybe...dunno if you can actually count on gomes to catch 120+ games a year.  he may be high-end backup/rest with powerful bench option between him and contreras.

yow...okay, maybe trade watch is very underway.

https://twitter.com/WContreras40/status/1465719425634549761

CRUNCH: Willson Contreras to the Yankees just makes too much sense. 

yanks and wsox fans are both hyped up over this signing by the cubs.

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  • crunch 1 hour 39 min ago (view)

    yanks and wsox fans are both hyped up over this signing by the cubs.

     

  • Arizona Phil 3 hours 17 min ago (view)

    CRUNCH: I would be very surprised if the Cubs sign anyone with a QO attached, so that rules out Story and Correa. I could see the Cubs maybe acquiring Didi Gregorius from the Phillies as a Phillie salary dump if the Phils sign Correa or Story. Then the Cubs could flip Gregorius at the trade deadline. Gregorius is signed thru 2022 at about $14M. Gregorius could end up back with the Yankees for a year under a similar scenario. 

     

  • Arizona Phil 3 hours 24 min ago (view)

    CRUNCH: Willson Contreras to the Yankees just makes too much sense. 

     

  • crunch 3 hours 43 min ago (view)

    yow...okay, maybe trade watch is very underway.

    https://twitter.com/WContreras40/status/1465719425634549761

     

  • crunch 3 hours 47 min ago (view)

    yan gomes 2/13m cubs.

    contreras trade watch underway...maybe...dunno if you can actually count on gomes to catch 120+ games a year.  he may be high-end backup/rest with powerful bench option between him and contreras.

     

  • crunch 3 hours 52 min ago (view)

    j.baez to DET....6/140m

    cubs are obviously in the market for a SS, especially since hoerner has been put on notice he could be a ultility player in 2022.  it's looking a lot like trevor story time unless he gets priced out.

    not too stoked on his bat, but his glove is solid.

     

  • Sonicwind75 4 hours 33 min ago (view)

    Have to admit that as someone that now lives in Texas and enjoys baseball in general (not just Cubs), will likely head to DFW instead of Houston this summer to get my baseball fix.  New stadium, some exciting new players.  Guess that covers $100 of those millions they just spent.

    I figured the Rangers would make a Jason Werth type of signing this offseason.  Overpay to bring in a big time free agent that signals that the organization is transitioning from rebuilding to trying to be competive.  Didn't expect them to double down on it. 

     

  • crunch 20 hours 57 min ago (view)

    corey seager signed a deal for 32.5m a year and that means carlos correa is having a really great day.

     

  • Dolorous Jon Lester 21 hours 32 min ago (view)

    Texas has a wildly expensive middle infield. They've also set the market really high for the remaining SS. And they did it single handedly.

     

  • crunch 22 hours 59 min ago (view)

    c.seager goes to TEX for 10/325.

    they've committed to spend 1/2 billion this week (marcus semien added, too).

    meanwhile, the cubs complained to the local paper about how their new multi-million dollar sports betting lounge isn't a casino and they sent out a "cyber monday" ad to offer the great deal of it costing nothing to get on the season tickets waiting list.

    it already is and will continue to be a hell of a 24 hours.  maybe the cubs will *shrug* i dunno...do something worth talking about.

     

  • crunch 1 day 3 hours ago (view)

    BA released their top-10 cubs prospects list...

    1. Brennen Davis

    2. Cristian Hernandez

    3. Brailyn Marquez

    4. Pete Crow-Armstrong

    5. Jordan Wicks

    6. Kevin Alcantara

    7. Caleb Kilian

    8. Owen Caissie

    9. DJ Herz

    10. Yohendrick Pinango

    reggie preciado got robbed.

     

  • crunch 1 day 3 hours ago (view)

    m.scherzer mets 3/130m (wow)

    that's more than the entire payroll for PIT last season per year and only a bit less than what BAL, CLE, and MIA paid out.

     

  • crunch 1 day 3 hours ago (view)

    both are equally useful to a baseball team.

     

  • Dolorous Jon Lester 1 day 4 hours ago (view)

    The violinist or the camera staring afficionado?

     

  • Hagsag 1 day 4 hours ago (view)

    Taylor Davis might be next.

     

  • Dolorous Jon Lester 1 day 5 hours ago (view)

    STOP THE PRESSES! They signed someone. Some random lefty RP named Locke St.John.

    Sounds like a Bond villain.