Mandatory Credit: David Manning-USA TODAY Sports
The Blue Jays left some prominent prospects available for the Rule 5 Draft, but they can also target others
Before acquiring Jesse Chavez from the Oakland A’s in return for Liam Hendriks, the Blue Jays protected a couple of relievers, Brady Dragmire and Blake McFarland. It’s expected that they may be able to support the 2016 Blue Jays Bullpen, an obvious area of need management will want to address before the season starts. With all these transactions in mind, we head towards the Rule 5 Draft.
Before you discount the Rule 5 draft, remember that R.A. Dickey was acquired by the Mariners using it, Joakim Soria was acquired by the Royals, and Delino DeShields Jr was the star of last year’s draft. Now that we have your attention, let’s see what this year’s crop is made of.
Ex-Blue Jays Prospects
There’s a good number of ex-Jays prospects available in this draft, including a few who were just traded in 2015 during the Jays numerous deals.
They include (Jays transaction in brackets):
- Alberto Tirado, 20 years old, HiA, Phillies (Ben Revere deal)
- Myles Jaye, 23 years old, AA, RHP, White Sox (Jason Frasor deal)
- Dawel Lugo, 20 years old, HiA, SS, Diamondbacks (Cliff Pennington deal)
- Wuilmer Becerra, 21 years old, LoA, Mets (R.A. Dickey deal)
- Balbino Fuenmayor, 25 years old, AAA, Royals (released)
The interesting thing here is that if the Jays claim Tirado from the Phillies, it essentially makes their acquisition of Ben Revere a heads up deal – Revere for prospect Jimmy Cordero (23 yrs old in HiA). That’s a pretty nice deal if you ask me. And if they decide on Dawel Lugo, they essentially got Cliff Pennington’s services for only the cost of his salary while they had him as a Jays player. With the familiarity of the players being what it is, you could foresee a reunion being possible.
The problem with that thought is that they are both lower down in the minors, so providing them with a 40-man roster spot can be hard to do. Particularly if you’re trying to fill up on MLB ready talent, which may be a possibility in this Rule 5 draft class. The two on the list above that could interest the Jays are Jaye (26 GS, 3.29 ERA, 1.233 Whip) and Fuenmayor (.358/.384/.591). If I were to bet on them acquiring one of their old prospects, Myles Jaye would be my pick.
There are three Jays prospects currently on MLB.com’s Top 30 Jays Prospects list that are exposed in the Rule 5 draft. They are OF Dwight Smith Jr, 1B Matt Dean, and 3B Andy Burns. The fact that all three are position players is no mistake as the Jays decided to protect 2 relief pitchers (listed above) instead, prioritizing sorely needed depth in the bullpen.
With this in mind, here are 5 possible targets. These names were obtained using MLB.com’s Jonathan Mayo written list of players who were in the Top 100 overall or Top 30 of each organization and were left available in the draft. First up, one of several talented pieces made available by the Houston Astros impressive young depth…
Next: First up, pitching depth in the form of a changeup artist...