Rule 5 Draft
The Rule 5 Draft is complicated and knowing who is and isn’t eligible can be tricky. Here’s the official rule pertaining to who is eligible:
"Players who were signed when they were 19 or older and have played in professional baseball for four years are eligible, as are players who were signed at 18 and have played for five years."
As Todd Zolecki of MLB.com breaks down, the Phillies have five prospects in their top-30 who must be placed on the 40-man roster to avoid losing them to the Rule 5 Draft this winter: Adonis Medina (No. 3), shortstop Arquimedes Gamboa (No. 11), second baeman Daniel Brito (No. 12), infielder Jose Gomez (No. 16) and right-hander Tom Eshelman (No. 27)
Medina will absolutely be protected from the Rule 5 Draft being one of the top prospects not just in the organization but in all of baseball.
The tricky aspect of the Rule 5 Draft is predicting whether or not a team will claim a really young prospect. Players claimed in the Rule 5 Draft must remain with the claiming team’s major league club for the entire season, or else the team must offer that player back to his original club.
Would a team put in a Rule 5 claim on Gamboa, who played last season with High-A Clearwater and is just 21-years-old? Same goes for Brito and Gomez, who also played in Clearwater last year.
Had Eshelman been effective in 2018 like he had in 2017 when he won 13 games with a 2.40 ERA, he’d be a lock for Rule 5 protection.
More from Phillies News
- Phillies-Mets owners’ rivalry grows after shocking Carlos Correa deal
- Could Rich Hill become ‘Jamie Moyer 2.0’ in Phillies rotation?
- Does Bailey Falter have a future in Phillies’ rotation?
- Bryce Harper’s absence should lead to Phillies lineup tinkering
- Pirates’ bizarre Vince Velasquez hype video will make Phillies fans laugh
After going from 13-3 to 2-13 with Lehigh Valley do the Phillies want to protect someone at the bottom of their prospect list whose ceiling is likely a bottom of the rotation arm?
Unfortunately the Phillies will have to protect their prospects before free agency opens up. They can always protect Eshelman then designate him for assignment if needed, but I would not be surprised if the Phillies don’t protect Eshelman.
It’s possible the Phillies only protect two or three prospects eligible for free agency with the hope that no one picks them because they aren’t major league ready.
Overall I expect there to be as many as 12 vulnerable spots on the 40-man roster between trades, free agency, and the Rule 5 Draft. Realistically there won’t be that many players moved, but in an offseason expected to be littered with moves, we could see some major shakeups to the Phillies roster come opening day.