The Royals will get to select second in the Rule 5 draft, to take place at 11 a.m. CT Thursday morning. They currently have four open roster spots and expect to be “active” in the Rule 5 draft, according to Dayton Moore. Last year, the team acquired pitchers Brad Keller and Burch Smith in the Rule 5 draft.
Players eligible to be selected are those players not on the 40-man roster who were signed when they were 19 or older and have played in professional baseball for four years or who were signed at 18 and have played for five years. A selected player must stay on the active Major League roster for a full season or be offered back to his original team after clearing waivers. There is also a minor league portion that really doesn’t produce many future big leaguers (Omar Narvaez is probably the best player ever taken in that phase). There are no requirements on what roster the selected player has to be assigned to all year.
The Orioles seem likely to take A’s infielder Richie Martin, according to Baseball America writer J.J. Cooper. The Royals will have the second pick after them.
Look for the Royals to take a pitcher, with arms like Trevor Clifton, Tyler Jay, Riley Ferrell, Junior Fernandez, Chris Ellis, Jackson McCllelland, and Sam McWilliams as possibilities. Other intriguing players include infielders Drew Anderson, Max Schrock and Kean Wong, and utility players Ray-Patrick Dider, Travis Demerette.
Unprotected Royals players eligible to be drafted include catcher Xavier Fernandez, first baseman Frank Schwindel, infielders D.J. Burt and Jecksson Flores, outfielders Donnie Dewees and Rudy Martin, and pitchers Bryan Brickhouse, Gerson Garabito, Foster Griffin, Jake Kalish, and Yunior Marte.
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