Recapping the Rule 5 Draft

Martin assesses the 2023 Rule 5 Draft Class and its fantasy impact

The Rule 5 Draft was December 4th, and for those not familiar, here is how the Rule 5 process works. MLB clubs must add players to their 40-man roster within a specific timeframe, or the player is subject to selection in the Rule 5 Draft. For example, players signed at age 18 must be added to the 40-man roster within five years. Similarly, players signed at age 19 have four years. Any player not protected by their current club (added to the 40-man roster) becomes eligible for the annual Rule 5 Draft.

Once a Rule 5 player is selected in the draft, they must remain on the 26-man roster for the entire season. If they are removed from the 26-man, that player is forfeited to their original team. If a Rule 5 player is traded at any point, the rules apply to the team acquiring them.

In addition to the MLB phase of the draft, there is a minor league phase. This year, 63 players were selected.

Now that we’ve established the rules, here is a team-by-team breakdown of this year’s 2023 Rule 5 Draft! The players listed below were added to the 40-man, drafted in the Rule 5 draft, or remained with their current team despite not being protected.



Baltimore OriolesHudson Haskin (OF)*

Haskin was the lone player that was Rule 5 eligible for the Orioles but was not selected. The 24-year-old outfielder was a 2020 draft pick of the Orioles out of Tulane. Despite battling numerous injuries, Haskin has put together a solid minor-league career. Unfortunately, Haskin will need a change of scenery to get a shot. He is off the radar on a deep organizational depth chart behind players like Colton Cowser, Kyle Stowers, and Dylan Beavers.


Boston Red Sox – Justin Slaten (RP; acquired from NY Mets)

Slaten was selected by the Mets in the draft but landed with the Red Sox a day later via trade. The 6’4″ starter has been a Rangers farmhand since his debut in 2019. In four seasons, Slaten is 16-19 overall but has been impressive since moving to a relief role in 2022. Since the transition, Slaten has excelled, striking out 12.3 batters per nine and improving his walk rate. He has four pitches that rank over 100 on the AAA Stuff+ report and figures to see extended time in an often overworked Red Sox bullpen.


New York YankeesClayton Beeter (SP) 

The Yankees added the 25-year-old to their 40-man, likely with the idea that they’d be trading top pitching prospect Drew Thorpe for an offensive upgrade (Juan Soto). Beeter has an outstanding slider that has produced Whiff rates north of 30%, but his command has been an issue. With walk rates consistently over 10%, Beeter is teetering on the verge of being a reliever.


Tampa Bay RaysAustin Shenton (1B/3B)

The Rays rewarded Shenton for his brilliant 2023 season by adding the 25-year-old to their 40-man. Splitting time between Double and Triple-A, Shenton hit .304 with 29 homers and 99 RBIs this past season with a .423 on-base percentage. His outlook with the Rays remains unclear, but they have a deep system loaded with impressive power bats, and Shenton fits the mold.


Toronto Blue JaysAdam Macko (SP)

The Jays acquired Macko last season in a trade for Teoscar Hernández, and his first season for High-A Vancouver was so-so. He finished 5-5 with a 4.81 ERA, despite a 28.5% strikeout rate. Macko has a high-90s fastball with a wipeout slider and curve. His strikeout upside is tantalizing if he can stay healthy, but injuries continue to hamper his growth. The Jays saw enough from Macko to protect and keep him on their 40-man




Chicago White Sox – Shane Drohan (SP)

Drohan will change his Sox, going from Red to White. The 23-year-old southpaw has battled inconsistency throughout his career but has shown flashes of potential. He offers a plus changeup that plays well off his low-90s fastball and curve. In 2023, Drohan went 10-7, albeit with an ERA over 5.00 and a WHIP of 1.58. As the White Sox enter a rebuild, Drohan could see significant time in the majors this season as part of the newly formed rotation.


Cleveland Guardians – Devyison De Los Santos (3B)

The Guardians will try to work their magic on De Los Santos, the Dominican slugger formerly of the Diamondbacks. At his peak, De Los Santos was a highly regarded prospect almost exclusively based on his tremendous power. His power is impactful, but his contact skills are lacking, and his defense is poor. At best, his long-term profile is as a DH, although he will have to improve his contact skills to find success. De Los Santos is unlikely to make the team in the spring and would return to the Diamondbacks.


Detroit TigersWilmer Flores (SP)

The Tigers protected Flores ahead of the Rule 5 Draft, adding the righty to their 40-man. Flores is highly regarded in the organization and has posted a 3.66 career ERA in the minors over three seasons. He has a three-pitch mix, including a low-90s fastball, slider, and curve. Flores has shown excellent control while posting respectable strikeout numbers and should be a mid-rotation starter. Flores is poised to make his MLB debut this season and warrants a look in deeper redraft formats.


Kansas City Royals – Matt Sauer (SP)

The Royals poached Sauer, a former 2nd-round pick of the Yankees, with the 2nd pick in this year’s Draft. Sauer had arm issues early in his career but has posted elite strikeout numbers, including a 28% K-rate over his past three seasons. At 6’4″, 230 lbs, Sauer has the body and arsenal to continue producing at a high level, but the opportunity has eluded him. The Royals could deploy Sauer in 2024, and he warrants a late flyer in redraft or a dynasty stash.


Minnesota TwinsEmmanuel Rodriguez (OF)

Rodriguez has one of the highest ceilings of any player in the minor leagues, but his floor is what’s most concerning. The talented 20-year-old was added to the Twins’ 40-man late in November, ensuring Rodriguez will remain in the pipeline. E-Rod has an exciting blend of power and speed, but his near-30% strikeout rate and poor contact skills have limited his production. If everything clicks for Rodriguez, he’s a surefire top-20 prospect, but the range of outcomes provides incredible risk with the reward. Rodriguez should debut in late 2024 or early 2025 for the Twins.




Houston AstrosKenedy Corona (OF)

Corona has big production in a little frame. The 5’10” (very generous) outfielder has posted consecutive 20-20 seasons across multiple levels while playing premium defense in center field. Corona profiles as a 4th outfielder type despite his production, although he could benefit from an organizational change. With the Astros always in their competitive window, he could be an intriguing trade piece for the Astros to obtain impact MLB talent.


Los Angeles Angels – Jack Kochanowicz (SP)

With a rebuild on the horizon, Jack Kochanowicz is an intriguing arm to monitor for the Angels. At 6’7″, Kochanowicz has a massive frame with fantastic control. His high-90s fastball and sinking changeup produce high groundball rates, although his numbers in the hitter-friendly Southern League don’t reflect it. Realistically, Kochanowicz will debut in 2024 for the Angels, although a definitive role remains unclear.


Oakland AthleticsMitch Spence (SP)

Spence was selected first overall in the Rule 5 Draft, moving from the Yankees organization to the West Coast. Spence profiles as a back-end starter or middle-reliever and has proven to be a reliable source of innings over his career. Spence led MiLB in innings pitched in 2023 last season, logging 163 for Triple-A Scranton Wilkes-Barre. The pitching-starved A’s should give Spence a look in Spring Training, with an outside chance at making their rotation.


Seattle MarinersZach DeLoach (OF)

One day after trading former top prospect Jarred Kelenic to Atlanta, the Mariners protected 2020 2nd-round pick Zach DeLoach by adding him to their 40-man roster. DeLoach lacks the pedigree of Kelenic but has posted similar production in the hitter-friendly PCL. Over three seasons with the M’s, DeLoach is hitting .275 with 51 homers and a .377 OBP. He lacks a carrying tool in fantasy but provides solid positional depth for the Mariners entering 2024.


Texas RangersJustin Foscue (2B)

The decision to protect Foscue was an easy one for the Rangers. Despite no clear path to playing time in the big leagues, Foscue, a 1st round pick in 2020, has accomplished everything he could in the minors. In three seasons, he has slashed .276/.380/.499 with three straight double-digit HR seasons. This past season, Foscue posted a 15.1% walk rate, far exceeding his 12.4% strikeout rate. Foscue provides depth for the Rangers but could be an everyday player for other clubs.




Atlanta BravesJesse Franklin V (OF)*

The Braves opted not to protect Franklin in the draft, and he was not selected. Franklin was a 3rd round pick in 2020 but has battled injury and inconsistency in his career. Following Tommy John surgery in 2022, Franklin hit .232 with 15 homers and 21 steals this season at Double-A. Franklin has plenty of raw power and athleticism, but his contact rate is concerning. Unless he can improve his hit tool, his outlook appears bleak in a talent-laden Braves organization.


Miami MarlinsAnthony Maldonado (RP)

Maldonado is one of the more intriguing players added to a 40-man roster ahead of the Rule 5 Draft. He’s struggled over his career but is coming off a dynamic 2023 season. Maldonado offers a three-pitch mix with a sinker, slider, and cutter, with his slider and cutter boasting Whiff rates north of 45%. He finished 2023 with a 1.62 ERA and .90 WHIP with a 39.4% K-rate. Given the state of the Marlins’ bullpen, Maldonado is a sneaky stash for save opportunities entering 2024.


New York MetsAlex Ramirez (OF)

Following a disappointing 2023, the Mets are re-tooling (don’t call it a rebuild) ahead of 2024. Among their changes was adding talented outfielder Alex Ramirez to their roster. The 6’3″ Dominican-born Ramirez has plenty of tools but has been unable to piece them together. At his best, Ramirez has solid raw power and speed. Paired with elite defense, Ramirez has the tools to reach the big leagues. Ramirez has shown the ability to run, but his power has not translated into game situations.


Philadelphia PhilliesCarlos De La Cruz (OF)*

The Phillies failed to protect Carlos De La Cruz, but fortunately, teams passed up on the 6’8″ outfielder. De La Cruz has plus power and has shown an ability to hit for average. Unfortunately, his 30% career strikeout rate has hampered his progress. His physical frame and athleticism provide hope that he can pan out, but until he controls his swing-and-miss, De La Cruz is staying in the minors.


Washington NationalsNasim Nunez (SS)

The Nats grabbed Nunez in the Rule 5 Draft, pulling him from inter-division rival Miami. The speedy infielder provides elite defense and stolen base potential but offers little offensive upside. Over his minor league career, Nunez has 183 steals in 350 games but has hit just .233. Nunez has yet to play at Triple-A but could be a late-season call-up in 2024 for a cellar-dwelling Nationals club. If Nunez sees regular playing time, he provides league-winning potential for teams needing steals.




Chicago Cubs – Michael Arias (RHP)

Arias was a surprising addition to the 40-man roster, but the move could be procedural, and he is a likely trade candidate. A previously converted shortstop, Arias has only pitched professionally for three seasons. He offers a high-octane fastball and a plus changeup that have yielded high strikeout rates. Obvious concerns include a lack of experience and inconsistent command. In addition, Arias has a slender frame (6′, 155lbs), which poses durability questions. A future role for Arias is likely in the bullpen, but any MLB impact will be in 2025 or later.


Cincinnati Reds – Rece Hinds (OF)

It’s no surprise Hinds was protected by the Reds ahead of the Rule 5 Draft. Despite a litany of talented infield prospects, the Reds have few in the outfield. Among them is Hinds, who had an impressive 2023 at Double-A, posting a .269 average with 23 homers and 20 steals. Hinds has struggled with contact (34.9% K-rate), but his power remains intriguing. It will be interesting to see Hinds this Spring. If he impresses in March, he could find his way into a competition for a fourth outfielder role as the Reds head East to start the season.


Milwaukee BrewersJeferson Quero (C)

Adding Quero to the 40-man was a no-brainer for the Brewers. Quero, the team’s #2 overall prospect, is one of two catchers on the 40-man, joining 2023 breakout William Contreras. Despite battling injuries nearly every season, Quero has consistently produced at each level. He is an elite defender with an improving bat. Quero could break camp as the backup catcher for the Brew Crew, although it would be a significant jump from Double-A to the big leagues. The added benefit is that the Brewers have an incumbent All-Star catcher to ease Quero into the Show.


Pittsburgh Pirates – Braxton Ashcraft (SP)

Four seasons pitched, 162 innings. For Pirates prospect Braxton Ashcraft, injuries are the norm. His arm talent is intriguing, but can Ashcraft provide the return on the risk? On the surface, an upper-90s fastball paired with two breaking pitches (slider, curve) give Ashcraft an arsenal to compete as a starter. But his durability has proved costly. Following his return from Tommy John (2022), Ashcraft made 19 starts in 2023, going 0-3 with a 2.39 ERA and 1.08 WHIP. His velocity returned post-surgery, but how will he hold up in 2024? Ashcraft is exciting, but temper your expectations until we see a healthy season.


St. Louis CardinalsSem Robberse (SP)

2023 was an ugly season for the St. Louis Cardinals. The primary reason for their struggles was inconsistency and attrition in their starting rotation. Robberse was added to the 40-man this fall, providing the Red Birds depth at the position ahead of 2024. The 22-year-old Dutch pitcher has thrown 334 1/3 career minor-league innings, striking out a batter per inning with a 3.85 ERA. Robberse has a diverse arsenal, including a mid-90s fastball and several secondary offerings. Barring injury, he’ll start 2024 in Triple-A but could see significant time down the stretch, most likely out of the bullpen.




Arizona DiamondbacksBlake Walston (SP)

The Diamondbacks continued to show their belief in Walston, protecting the 6’5″ southpaw ahead of the Draft. In four seasons, Walston is 24-14 with a 4.52 ERA and 1.57 WHIP. Walks plagued him this season as Walston posted a 14% walk-rate, just below his 15.6% K-rate. Walston has the arsenal to produce high strikeout numbers, but his command regressed exponentially this season. Given the depth of starters in the D’Backs system, Walston needs to start strong in 2024 if he’s going to get a look in the big leagues.


Colorado Rockies – Adael Amador (SS)

The top prospect added to a team’s 40-man roster ahead of the Rule 5 Draft was Rockies’ shortstop Adael Amador. The 20-year-old is a consensus top-20 prospect in baseball and ranks #1 in the Colorado organization. Amador offers a disciplined plate approach from both sides of the plate with a hit-over-power profile. In addition, he plays elite defense and has improved speed. As a teenager playing across three levels in 2023, Amador slashed .292/.401/.461 with 12 homers and 15 steals. With Ezequiel Tovar locked in at short, Amador could flip over to second ahead of his MLB debut. There is no guarantee with the Rockies’ prospects, but Amador is a foundational piece of the Rockies’ future and should debut this summer.


Los Angeles DodgersNick Frasso (SP)

Injuries have limited Frasso to 152 innings over the past three seasons, but when healthy, Frasso offers incredible potential on the mound. Standing 6’5″, 200lbs, the righthander can reach triple-digits on the radar gun with plus movement. In addition, his changeup serves as a plus secondary pitch, although he lacks a true third offering. Frasso has a 30.2% career strikeout rate in the minors but has yet to stay healthy or show an ability to pitch deep into games.


San Diego PadresJairo Iriarte (RP)

Iriarte is electric, and the Padres added the talented right-hander to their 40-man in late November. Initially a starter, Iriarte made some relief appearances in 2023 and could settle in long term as a reliever. He has a mid-90s fastball with a mid-80s slider and changeup. Command is an issue for Iriarte as he’s maintained a 10% walk rate over his career. On the other hand, he has a 26.6% strikeout rate, including 33.2% this season, spanning two levels.


San Francisco GiantsErik Miller (RP)

Erik Miller started his minor league career exclusively as a starter but transitioned to the bullpen full-time in July 2022. Since the move, Miller has been solid in his new role. This season at AA and AAA, Miller was 3-1 with a 2.45 ERA, holding hitters to a .495 OPS. Miller has huge velocity from the left side, often reaching the upper 90s with his fastball. However, the primary reason for his move to the pen was his inconsistent command, and 2023 was no different. Despite posting great surface stats, his 17.4% walk rate remains a red flag. Even with his struggles, Miller is one of two lefty bullpen on the Giants projected roster entering 2024.

Martin Sekulski

Martin is a Dynasty writer for PitcherList. He is a lifelong member of Red Sox Nation and attributes his love of baseball to his father, Marty. As a father and a husband, Martin now loves sharing his love of America's pastime with his family. You can find his work on Twitter and SubStack

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Account / Login