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2017 Rule 5 Protection & The 40-Man Roster


Mass Haas

Not to be confused with our Brewer Minor League Free Agency Eligibles After the 2017 Season Thread, this thread focuses on those players who will be eligible to be selected in December's Rule 5 Draft, and has you consider who Milwaukee should add to the 40-man roster to protect.

 

Remember --

 

Players who signed when 18 or younger are eligible for the draft after five years.

Players who signed when 19 or older are eligible after four years.

 

According to the rules, it's how old a player was on the June 5th immediately preceding his signing.

 

Here's another aspect on service time where folks can get confused. When a player (in nearly all cases, a young international player) signs a contract but then doesn't play that initial year, such as most of the July 2nd signing period international signings, that year still counts towards Rule 5 service time. So a player like Helena 2B Franly Mallen, who was less than 18 years old when he signed and has played in four pro seasons, qualifies because he signed (and didn't play) in 2013.

 

Where that idle "unplayed" year does NOT count is towards minor league free agency service time. In terms of that, Mallen has earned only four years, not five, of the seven years in which the Brewers own his rights.

 

Below are the players not eligible for free agency, but who would be Rule 5 eligible if not placed on the 40-man roster.

 

If a player is italicized, it's the first year the player is eligible to be added to a 40-man roster.

 

Players listed alphabetically within level:

 

Current AAA Players --

 

RHP Tristan Archer

RHP Michael Brady

RHP Aaron Brooks

IF Mauricio Dubon

C Tyler Heineman

UT Nate Orf

OF Kyle Wren

 

Current AA Players --

 

IF Javier Betancourt

OF Clint Coulter

OF Johnny Davis

1B Dustin DeMuth

RHP Preston Gainey

C Dustin Houle

C Jacob Nottingham

SS Angel Ortega

RHP Freddy Peralta

RHP Tyler Spurlin

OF Tyrone Taylor

RHP Josh Uhen

 

Current A-Level (or below) players --

 

IF Luis Aviles

OF Carlos Belonis

RHP Rodrigo Benoit

RHP Jesus Brea

RHP Joaquin De La Cruz

RHP Victor Diaz

RHP Marcos Diplan

RHP Nattino Diplan

RHP Nelson Hernandez

RHP Alec Kenilvort

C Carlos Leal

RHP Yosmer Leal

LHP Frank Lopez

RHP Carlos Luna

2B Franly Mallen

IF Julio Mendez

RHP Daniel Missaki

IF Tucker Neuhaus

RHP Braulio Ortiz

OF Nicolas Pierre

IF Wendell Rijo

OF Joantgel Segovia

RHP Devin Williams

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My own prediction - Mauricio Dubon, Jacob Nottingham, Freddy Peralta, Marcos Diplan

 

On the bubble - I'm sure there will be fans of protecting Kyle Wren, Nate Orf, Aaron Wilkerson, maybe even a Johnny Davis. Keep in mind that if you're advocating adding LHP/1B Nick Ramirez or RHP Angel Ventura from the minor league free agency thread, that's going to impact available 40-man roster spots as well.

 

Feel free to chime in here.

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I think you've pretty much got it Mass. Nottingham if only because we don't really have much C depth, although I don't really foresee someone keeping him on the 25-man all year. Harder to keep a C you have to rely on throughout the season than a MI or RP.
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My wants: RHP Tristan Archer, IF Mauricio Dubon, UT Nate Orf, C Jacob Nottingham, RHP Freddy Peralta, RHP Aaron Wilkerson, RHP Marcos Diplan, 2B Franly Mallen, RHP Devin Williams

 

My prediction: RHP Tristan Archer, IF Mauricio Dubon, C Jacob Nottingham, RHP Freddy Peralta, RHP Marcos Diplan

 

Diplan is questionable given his performance this year at A+, but given last years loss of similarly talented Miguel Diaz, I think they protect him.

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Given how poor starting pitching has been, I'd think that Wilkerson would be one of the first 5-7 picks. There may not be room for him here, but there is room for starting pitching under the age of 30 somewhere. Cincinnati, Oakland, Detroit, Minnesota, San Diego, Baltimore, Toronto, Giants, Phillies... one of those teams is grabbing him.

 

For reference: Wilkerson is 3rd in the Southern League in strikeouts. He's started one fewer game than Mike Soroka, pitched six fewer innings, and has 23 more strikeouts than Soroka.

 

Wilkerson has started two fewer games than Kolby Allard, pitched one more inning, and struck out 30 more than Allard. You can acquire that for free and pay league minimum salary for three years and have six years of control - someone is taking a flyer on that, although I think it's likely the Brewers deal him prior to Rule 5.

 

Lock: Dubon, Peralta, Diplan, Wilkerson

Probably: Nottingham

If room: Orf, Archer, Uhen

 

Coming off of injury, I don't think anyone is taking a flyer on Devin Williams, but I understand the sentiment.

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Coming off of injury, I don't think anyone is taking a flyer on Devin Williams, but I understand the sentiment.

 

Up till last year (2016) I would have agreed with you about injury being a deterrent to being picked. Then Dan D & Baltimore made its selections.

During the draft they took Anthony Santander off Cleveland as he was known to be having shoulder surgery.

 

Baltimore has stashed him all season on the 60 Day DL and I recently saw on mlb trade rumors that the Birds are about to activate him and start "the clock" for retaining him.

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I think you've pretty much got it Mass. Nottingham if only because we don't really have much C depth, although I don't really foresee someone keeping him on the 25-man all year. Harder to keep a C you have to rely on throughout the season than a MI or RP.

 

I know he is young yet, but I would risk losing Nottingham and protect elsewhere. Either a team is going to have to keep him as their 3rd catcher or play him more than you want as the 2nd catcher - don't see either happening. It isn't like he is finishing strong at AA either, his July and August have been bad. This is assuming that his defense would be in the bottom 25% in the majors - am I right?

 

As for depth, we have four catchers on the 40 man already, and I don't see us dropping one off for next year - unless they feel after he came back Susac did not show enough.

 

I assume Espino, Torres will be off the 40. I don't have any idea where they stand on injuries for Houser and T.Williams - I assume that opens up at least one spot. A 2B will be gone for an opening. I only see Garza traded if we pick up a free agent - so a wash on the 40 man. Figure they resign Swarzak or sign a different Free Agent bullpen guy so a wash. Probably trade an OF, but also probably for someone that will need 40 man protection so a wash.

 

So Dubon, Peralta, and Wilkerson would be the for sure protects, and that may be it, especially if Stearns goes with 39 to see who isn't protected.

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I think you've pretty much got it Mass. Nottingham if only because we don't really have much C depth, although I don't really foresee someone keeping him on the 25-man all year. Harder to keep a C you have to rely on throughout the season than a MI or RP.

 

I know he is young yet, but I would risk losing Nottingham and protect elsewhere. Either a team is going to have to keep him as their 3rd catcher or play him more than you want as the 2nd catcher - don't see either happening. It isn't like he is finishing strong at AA either, his July and August have been bad. This is assuming that his defense would be in the bottom 25% in the majors - am I right?

 

As for depth, we have four catchers on the 40 man already, and I don't see us dropping one off for next year - unless they feel after he came back Susac did not show enough.

 

I assume Espino, Torres will be off the 40. I don't have any idea where they stand on injuries for Houser and T.Williams - I assume that opens up at least one spot. A 2B will be gone for an opening. I only see Garza traded if we pick up a free agent - so a wash on the 40 man. Figure they resign Swarzak or sign a different Free Agent bullpen guy so a wash. Probably trade an OF, but also probably for someone that will need 40 man protection so a wash.

 

So Dubon, Peralta, and Wilkerson would be the for sure protects, and that may be it, especially if Stearns goes with 39 to see who isn't protected.

 

I would say regardless of whether they add Nottingham to the 40, I see Susac being DFA. His showing this year in AAA & MLB has been quite poor. With having both Vogt and Bandy as backups and Susac out of options, I see the likelihood of Susac being let go is very high. Also, if we can get value for Vogt or Bandy, I could see dealing one of them, adding Nottingham and putting a catcher with mlb experience on a minor league contract in AAA.

 

As to the players currently of the 40, Houser hasn't done anything this year (I don't think) but T. Williams has had a good year in AA so he will definitely stick. I see a strong chance that Garza and Jungmann (and maybe Guerra) are moved in a trade (for something) unless we make a big trade involving Nelson or Anderson. Other people who I think will be gone by FA or released are Torres, Drake, Walker, Sogard, Espino, Hughes, Swarzak (might re-sign) and maybe Jeffress. Also the chance Jorge Lopez, Houser, Yadiel Rivera and Tyler Webb are DFA with the hopes of getting them on a minor league contract. When you add in removing some catchers and maybe trading Broxton (or a different OF), we have a lot of room to protect anyone they want to.

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I'd rather see them add Rene Garcia to the 40 man, DFA Susac, and expose Nottingham. Garcia's been able to produce in limited action and that's a nice attribute for catching depth.

 

So your plan includes exposing two, pretty highly thought of, catchers to include a guy that has a career OPS in the minor leagues in the mid .600's? Not only that but you're exposing a kid that is 22 years old to do it? Seems like shortsighted thinking to me.

"This is a very simple game. You throw the ball, you catch the ball, you hit the ball. Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose, sometimes it rains." Think about that for a while.
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Sometimes I wonder if Briggs makes wildly ridiculous comments like this just to see how the board will respond. On the major league side he was talking about whether counsel would survive a 2nd half collapse and not making the playoffs.

 

Anywho, yeah most on here tend to agree that there are 4 fairly obvious choice for the 40 man. Hard to say what moves we'll make to add them, especially considering we will probably be adding some MLB talent in the offseason. It's a shame to lose a guy like Wilkerson if/when a pitching needy team does pick him...but at the same time the whole point of the rule 5 system is to give a guy like him a chance at the mlb level.

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I don't think the Garcia thing is totally outrageous. While I can't see them adding Garcia at the expense of Nottingham, Susac has shown nothing since becoming a Brewer and Susac/Garcia are the exact same age. Can't totally ignore the season Garcia has had and the potential for things to just click for a catcher at a later age similar to Pina. More likely scenario is they DFA Susac and resign Garcia to a minor league deal.
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I don't think the Garcia thing is totally outrageous. While I can't see them adding Garcia at the expense of Nottingham, Susac has shown nothing since becoming a Brewer and Susac/Garcia are the exact same age. Can't totally ignore the season Garcia has had and the potential for things to just click for a catcher at a later age similar to Pina. More likely scenario is they DFA Susac and resign Garcia to a minor league deal.

 

Well right, the wildly ridiculous part is "at the expense of nottingham". There is next to zero chance that Nottingham is exposed.

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Susac has shown nothing since becoming a Brewer

Susac has had ongoing trap and headache issues this year. He's a talented player. He also can be optioned next year, which makes him valuable as a 2nd/3rd catcher. I don't think the Brewers would just release him. He's worth something to somebody. He's also still worth something to the Brewers.

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And speaking of options, I noticed that the Player Index no longer has options remaining. Is there another place to find that info?

knowing that a player will be out of options may prompt the brewers to cut him ahead of the rule 5 draft deadline to open up more spots. of the current 40-man, these are the players that will enter 2018 spring training with no minor league options remaining:

 

jesus aguilar

jett bandy

aaron brooks

oliver drake

junior guerra

jared hughes

jeremy jeffress

taylor jungmann

hernan perez

manny pina

yadiel rivera

anthony swarzak (will be eligible for free agency)

eric thames (by nature of his contract)

carlos torres

jonathan villar

stephen vogt

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And speaking of options, I noticed that the Player Index no longer has options remaining. Is there another place to find that info?

knowing that a player will be out of options may prompt the brewers to cut him ahead of the rule 5 draft deadline to open up more spots. of the current 40-man, these are the players that will enter 2018 spring training with no minor league options remaining:

 

jesus aguilar

jett bandy

oliver drake

junior guerra

jared hughes

jeremy jeffress

taylor jungmann

hernan perez

manny pina

yadiel rivera

anthony swarzak (will be eligible for free agency)

eric thames (by nature of his contract)

carlos torres

jonathan villar

stephen vogt

 

There are quite a few names listed that are at risk of getting cut prior to rule 5. The only incredibly safe names seem to be Aguilar, Thames, Pina, Perez, and Villar. I don't think they'll all get cut, but all the other remaining names could potentially be cut.

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My guess is that Nottingham gets promoted to AAA to start next season for a couple reasons:

1. Reports indicate that he's shown a lot of improvement defensively

2. Similar to Brett Phillips, a move to CS might boost his offensive numbers and get his confidence back behind the plate.

3. Adding him to the 40-man with many more 40-man decisions coming in the following years means that he'll have to show something to stay on the roster past the end of 2018.

 

With Pina/Vogt likely to be the duo next season, and Bandy starting at AAA along with maybe Nottingham, there's not a ton of room for Susac in AAA, let alone the 40-man roster as the 5th catcher on the depth chart. I'd say Susac is all but gone after a disappointing season (injuries played a huge part, yes, but we can't guarantee he'd be healthy next year either, that could just be who he is now).

 

Seems like Nottingham, Dubon, and Peralta are the three slam dunks to protect (Dubon I would've thought would be a September call up and get some time at 2B as well as being a pinch runner, but now that Walker is working out so well, chances of Dubon getting the call up seem less likely, maybe they'll call up that new guy in AAA instead for a pinch runner). If they didn't protect Miguel Diaz, it seems unlikely they'd protect Marcos Diplan (I know the cases are a little different but Diplan is years away from being major league ready for the Brewers, we can't afford to give him a spot for that long).

 

If Archer is protected, my guess is it would be at the expense of another reliver (Espino or Webb probably), but I don't think he will be protected.

 

I would really like it if Wilkerson were protected, but it seems difficult to imagine them protecting Wilkerson but not Diplan, so if I'm sticking to my theory, I'll say that Wilkerson isn't protected either. I think the Brewers are willing to just roll the dice on some of these guys, and honestly if Wang/Wren haven't been taken in years past, I think the odds of some of these guys getting taken is a lot less.

 

If we don't protect Diplan, odds are pretty good that someone will take him (hell, Diaz was a lower level and lesser prospect than Diplan and he was taken 1st overall), but not sure if they'll be able to stash him for a full year seeing as he can't even do much in the pitcher friendly Carolina league in his 2nd year at that level (or at least 1 1/2 years).

 

So I'll predict that they protect Dubon/Peralta/Nottingham, and roll the dice on the rest.

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Susac has shown nothing since becoming a Brewer

Susac has had ongoing trap and headache issues this year. He's a talented player. He also can be optioned next year, which makes him valuable as a 2nd/3rd catcher. I don't think the Brewers would just release him. He's worth something to somebody. He's also still worth something to the Brewers.

I don't think he is worth a 40 man spot for the Brewers anymore. There isn't much difference between Susac and Tyler Heineman at this point.

 

Regarding Diplan, I think he gets protected. I don't like the Diaz comparison because Diplan was always higher regarded, two years younger and further along than Diaz was. I still wouldn't take Diaz over Diplan.

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Small sample, but Tyrone Taylor is having a pretty good season and still is only 23 years old. He's back in the conversation.

 

If it's between him and Nottingham for the last spot, it's a lot easier for another team to stash a backup OF than a backup C. Tough call there.

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I've got a feeling it will just be the most likely five (Peralta, Dubon, Diplan, Ramirez, Nottingham), although relievers are sometimes tough to predict.

 

Taylor's become interesting again, but I just don't know that it is enough that they protect him. As for the other names sometimes mentioned, I think some of them seem to be more of the midseason, best option available adds to the roster than the offseason.

 

Pitchers taken in the Rule 5 draft tend to fall into three categories: 1. Relievers who either have big arms or loogy potential; 2. Upside guys who haven't hit AA yet; 3. Former high draft pick or top prospect reclamation projects. There is maybe one guy with Wilkerson's profile drafted each year. It wouldn't shock me if he is protected or picked, but I'd put the odds at about 75 percent that he doesn't start next season on a 40-man roster. I just think he'll be this year's version of previous upper minor league starters we've fretted about losing only to see them not end up drafted (Wang and Cravy, for example).

 

Orf if kind of the hitter's equivalent. If he was seen as more of a shortstop or had more pop, he'd be a no-brainer, but without either of those, he'll probably have to wait for an in-season injury to work his way onto the roster.

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