40-Man Roster Addition Roundup

Today (Nov. 18) at 8 p.m. ET is the deadline for teams to add players to the 40-man roster to protect them from eligibility in next month’s Rule 5 draft. We’ll keep updating the list of additions through the day. The number in parentheses is the number of players the team has on the 40-man roster.

Arizona Diamondbacks (40): Added LHP Anthony Banda, 3B Dawel Lugo, SS Reinheimer, RHP Jimmy Sherfy, 2B/SS Ildemaro Vargas and SS Domingo Leyba.

The Diamondbacks moved quickly to ensure three of their top prospects wouldn't get away in Banda, Lugo and Leyba. All three entered 2016 as reasonably promising players but shot up the prospect rankings with breakout seasons. Banda added a few ticks of velocity to become a bonafide power lefthander who works at 95-96 mph with a curveball and changeup both above average. He commands the ball down in the zone and is a reasonable candidate to the D'backs No. 1 prospect going to 2017. Lugo also re-established his prospect chops after dropping 15 pounds and becoming a vastly more explosive player, with double-plus arm strength from the hot corner and a strong bat with power. Leyba recovered from a down 2015 to reach Double-A in 2016 and hit .301 with an .809 OPS while showing strong defensive skills in the middle infield. Reinheimer and Sherfy lack such ceilings but have reasonable profiles to get to the majors as a utilityman and reliever, respectively, while Vargas hit .305 as he climbed from high Class to Triple-A. To make room for the additions, the Diamondbacks designated outfielders Gabby Guerrero and Kyle Jensen for assignment and lost four players to waiver claims: RHP Tyler Wagner (Rangers), RHP Dominic Leone (Blue Jays), C Tuffy Gosewisch (Braves), and LHP Edwin Escobar (Indians).

Atlanta Braves (38): Added LHP Max Fried, RHP Lucas Sims and SS Johan Camargo.

Fried bounced back nicely in 2016 from Tommy John surgery that wiped out the majority of two pro seasons. Even though he’s yet to pitch above Class A, his combination of plus stuff and pedigree would have made him a top Rule 5 target. Sims is still too wild to be relied on at the major league level, but he missed enough bats that the Braves didn’t want to take a risk on a team stashing him in their bullpen. Camargo was Rule 5 eligible last year and went unpicked, but now that he has a solid season at Double-A under his belt, the Braves didn’t want to risk losing the utility infielder who projects as potentially Dansby Swanson and Ozzie Albies low-cost backup in years to come.

Baltimore Orioles (35): Added RHP Joe Gunkel and RHP Jesús Liranzo.

Liranzo has already been released once as the Braves let him go before he ever made it to the States. But he sat unsigned for just a couple of weeks before the O’s added him. Baltimore brought him to the U.S. for the first time in 2016 and he made it all the way to Double-A in his first U.S. exposure. He has a power fastball/slider combination that piled up plenty of strikeouts but also a lot of walks.

Gunkel was acquired from the Red Sox for outfielder Alejandro de Aza. He's a low-slot sinker/slider groundball pitcher with excellent control. He's been used as a starter full-time in the minors, but there is some relief potential as well.

Boston Red Sox (40): Added RHP Kyle Martin and LHP Luis Ysla

The Red Sox kept their final 40-man roster spots for two advanced relievers who could see time in the majors as soon as next season. Martin, a towering 6-foot-7, 230-pound righthander, posted a 3.38 ERA with 10.5 strikeouts per nine at Triple-A Pawtucket this season. His fastball sits in the low-90s with a low-80s slider and changeup, and his size and three-quarters delivery creates some deception. The Red Sox originally drafted him in the ninth round in 2013 out of Texas A&M. Ysla owns the distinction of being the first player the Red Sox acquired under Dave Dombrowski after he was traded from the Giants in exchange for Alejandro De Aza in Aug. 2015. The Venezuelan southpaw ranked as the Red Sox No. 25 prospect before the season and posted a 3.99 ERA with 62 strikeouts in 56 1/3 innings of relief between Double-A Portland and Triple-A Pawtucket. His fastball/slider combination earns positive reviews and he was voted as having the best changeup in the South Atlantic League in 2014.

Chicago Cubs (39): Added RHP Jose Rosario, C Victor Caratini, RHP Duane Underwood, LHP Jack Leathersich and OF Jacob Hannemann

Caratini came to the Cubs in the Emilio Bonifacio trade in 2014. Caratini didn't convert to catching until college, but he's made strides behind the plate and throws OK. He has a very contact-oriented approach from both batter's boxes (he's a switch-hitter). Backup catchers usually hit for more power than Caratini does, but he did have a solid season offensively in Double-A.

Hannemann is more of a complimentary piece than a likely everyday player, but he is a solid defender in center field with speed, modest power and the ability to steal a base (26 steals in half a season this year). He missed a significant amount of time this year with a thumb injury he sustained diving for a ball in the outfield.

Underwood missed time this year with an elbow injury, but he didn't need surgery. Underwood's fastball lights up a radar gun, but it doesn't generate swings and misses. When he's on he does do a good job of getting weak contact.

The Cubs claimed Leathersich from the Mets when New York tried to slip him through waivers since he was recovering from Tommy John surgery. Chicago then dropped him from the 40-man roster, and resigned him to a minor league deal for the 2016 season. Leathersich did make it back on the mound late in the season and could play a larger role in 2017 as a Cubs' reliever, so the Cubs brought him back to the 40-man roster.

Rosario is a hard-throwing reliever who ranked as high as No. 22 on the Cubs' Top 30 Prospects list heading into the 2012 season. He missed the 2015 season with Tommy John surgery, but his 95-97 mph fastball bounced back post-surgery and he climbed three levels after moving to the bullpen. Rosario had never pitched above Class A coming into 2016, but he ended the year as Triple-A Iowa's closer. He has a fastball/slider combination that could work in low-leverage relief work. Rosario was Rule 5 eligible last season, but since he was rehabbing an injury, he was not really a logical candidate to be picked.

Cincinnati Reds (40): Added RHP Ariel Hernandez, Barrett Astin, RHP Keury Mella, RHP Nick Travieso, RHP Jackson Stephens, OF Aristides Aquino, OF Phillip Ervin and OF Jesse Winker

Aquino and Winker were easy decisions as they are both among the top prospects in the Reds' system. Former first-rounders Travieso and Ervin were also relatively easy choices, although in Ervin's case, his struggles to hit (.250 career average) made him a less than sure bet to be picked if left unprotected. Astin's solid performance in the Arizona Fall League and his impressive stuff (a heavy 93-95 mph fastball) and hard slider make him a candidate to help the Reds' bullpen in 2017. He was acquired from the Brewers in the Jonathan Broxton deal in 2014. Mella, acquired in last year's Mike Leake deal, was a Reds Top 10 Prospect coming into the season. He'll slip a little from that ranking when the new Top 10/30 is released this offseason, but he still has the power stuff of a future big league reliever. The Reds have long been impressed with Stephens’ combination of solid stuff and excellent control. His profile isn't all that different from that of Joe Biagini, a seemingly back-end starter who blossomed in the Blue Jays' bullpen as a Rule 5 pick. Hernandez is a fascinating story, one we covered in depth recently.

Cleveland Indians (40): Added C Francisco Mejia, LHP Tim Cooney and LHP Edwin Escobar. Outrighted C Chris Gimenez

The Indians weren’t about to let their No. 1 prospect get away, adding Mejia as the final player to their 40-man roster. Mejia strung together a 50-game hit streak across low Class A and high Class A this summer and ranks as one of the game’s top 100 prospects. The Indians kept their other additions to major league waiver claims, grabbing a pair of mid-20s lefthanders who can help their pitching staff immediately. Cooney, 25, missed all of 2016 after undergoing shoulder surgery but was a top prospect who had a 3.16 ERA over five starts in his major league debut in 2015. Escobar, 24, made 25 appearances for the Diamondbacks last season but posted an ugly 7.23 ERA. Gimenez was outrighted after he hit .216 in 66 games for the Indians last season.

Colorado Rockies (39): Added RHP Yency Almonte, RHP Zach Jemiola, RHP Shane Carle, LHP Sam Moll, RHP Rayan Gonzalez

Almonte and Jemiola are two Double-A starters with things to like, while the final three additions are depth options for a franchise that could always use them. Almonte is quickly rising in the system after he led the high Class A California League in strikeouts before being promoted to Double-A. He features a mid-90s fastball that can get up to 98 mph with sink and a low-80s slider as his out pitches, and some scouts believe he has the stuff and frame to become a No. 3 starter. He was originally a 22nd-round pick of the Angels, who traded him to the White Sox for Gordon Beckham, and the White Sox in turn shipped Almonte to Colorado for Tommy Kahnle. Jemiola, a 2013 ninth-round pick out of prep power Great Oak (Temecula, Calif.) HS, is a durable starter who pitched 162 innings at Double-A Hartford this year and another 22 1/3 innings in the Arizona Fall League. Moll is on the verge of the big leagues after making 42 relief appearances at Triple-A Albuquerque in 2016, while Carle started for Albuquerque as a ground-ball specialist with a 1.21 groundout-to-airout ratio. Gonzalez went 2-2, 3.12 out of the bullpen for Double-A Hartford with 49 strikeouts in 52 innings.

Chicago White Sox (37): Added OF Jacob May, OF Adam Engel and RHP Brad Goldberg; Outrighted RHP Brandon Brennan

The White Sox moved to protect three players from their 2013 draft class, including a pair of outfielders who ranked in their top 10 prospects before the season. May, ranked the No. 7 prospect, is a plus defensive center fielder with top flight speed that plays on the basepaths. He stole 19 bases despite playing only 83 games in 2016 and has a chance to be an everyday outfielder as long as he continues to develop offensively Engel, the No. 10 prospect, is also another speedy outfielder who led the entire system in runs (90), triples (12) and stolen bases (45) as he zoomed up from high Class A to Triple-A. He's never hit much (.264 career average) but gets on base enough (.344 career OBP) to utilize his speed, making him an enticing extra outfielder option. Goldberg, 26, went 3-5, 2.84 at Triple-A Charlotte this year with 10 saves in 11 chances and has a chance to contribute to the White Sox bullpen next year. Brennan, a 2012 fourth-round pick, was the odd man out after going 3-12, 6.79 between high Class A and Double-A.

Detroit Tigers (38): Added LHP Chad Bell, RHP Myles Jaye and RHP Sandy Baez

Bell is a somewhat surprising addition to the 40-man roster. Detroit acquired him from the Rangers for C Bobby Wilson in 2016. He was left unprotected in last year's Rule 5 draft and went unpicked. A lefty with an average-at-best fastball (91 mph) and a fringe-average changeup and breaking ball, Bell generally is around the plate, although he did uncharacteristically struggle with his control while working as a swingman at Toledo. He's a potential second or third lefty out of a bullpen if he sticks in the big leagues. Jaye came to the Tigers in a different Wilson trade. He fits a similar profile, although he is a crafty righthanded pitcher. Jaye throws four pitches, none of which grades as plus, but he has above-average control and generally keeps the ball in the park. Like Bell he was Rule 5 eligible in 2015 and went unpicked. Baez is a wild card as a starter with a 94-97 mph fastball but inconsistent breaking pitches he often lacks feel for. His raw arm strength is promising, but he has also never pitched above low Class A and allowed a .283 opponent average at that level in 2016.

Houston Astros (39): Added LHP Reymin Guduan.

A year ago, the Astros took a gamble that Guduan's frightening control would scare away teams who might be intrigued by Guduan's exceptional left arm. It was a logical risk, as Guduan walked 6.5 batters per nine innings. A year later, Guduan is still wild (5.9 BB/9) but he also still throws really hard (93-99 mph) with an improving slider. And his modicum of success at the upper levels of the minors led the Astros to decide that this year, a team might be more willing to stash one of the better lefty arms in the minors.

Kansas City Royals (38): Added RHP Andrew Edwards, RHP Jake Junis, C Cam Gallagher and 1B Samir Duenez.

Edwards figured out his delivery in 2016 and found that it came with a 95-98 mph fastball and an improved slider. With that kind of stuff, he would have been a viable Rule 5 pick and is an option to help the Royals bullpen in 2017.

Junis has added a little to his fastball this year, but he is more notable for the consistency of his stuff more than a plus pitch.

Gallagher hasn't hit much, but he is the Royals' best emergency catching option in the minors because of his solid defense. He looks right now more like a No. 3 catcher than a true big league backup.

Duenez is a very young (he'll play half of next year as a 20-year-old) first baseman with an ability to hit although there are questions about how much power he'll develop.

Los Angeles Angels (40): Added RHPs Austin Adams, Keynan Middleton and Eduardo Paredes and LHP Nate Smith.

Smith pitched in the Futures Game and was the steadiest starter at Triple-A Salt Lake this season. He's a finesse pitcher with a fastball that usually sits 87-90 and touches 92, a good changeup and feel for his off speed stuff. Middleton has one of the Angels' biggest arms since converting to the bullpen in 2016, when his career got on the right track. He's on BA's 100 mph chart. Adams, left off the 40-man last year, has hit 97 mph and usually sits around 94, but his best pitch is a slider. He's had durability issues with a max-effort delivery. Paredes, a stocky Venezuelan, also has some power with a fastball that has reached 96 mph, and he mixes in a slider and changeup as well.

Los Angeles Dodgers (40): RHP Chase DeJong, C Kyle Farmer and RHP Jacob Rhame

The Dodgers have significant pitching depth in their system, but made sure not to risk losing DeJong. The 22-year old LA-area native was named the Texas League Pitcher of the Year and went 15-5, 2.82 between Double-A and Triple-A this year. He relies on deception and location, throwing 90-91 mph with his fastball and pounding the bottom of the zone. Rhame and Farmer ranked Nos. 20 and 29, respectively in the Dodgers top 30 prospects before the season and have track records of performance in the upper minors, providing possible depth down the road for the Dodgers. Rhame has been clocked at 97 mph but doesn’t hit it consistently and his control comes and goes. Farmer has thrown out 33 percent of runners and has a career .291/.343/.429 slash line.

Miami Marlins (36): RHPs Drew Steckenrider, Luis Castillo, SS Austin Nola and 2B J.T. Riddle

Castillo is one of the Marlins’ top prospects. He was traded to the Padres, then reacquired when Colin Rea came down with an arm injury that eventually required Tommy John surgery. Finally healthy, Steckenrider put himself on the map this year and excelled in the AFL. He should fight for a bullpen spot in 2017. Nola might get a shot behind the plate as the Marlins test his versatility. Riddle’s skill set portends a potentially useful utility player.

Milwaukee Brewers (39): Added RHP Taylor Williams, CF Lewis Brinson, CF Brett Phillips, LHP Josh Hader and OF Ryan Cordell
All four of the Brewers' additions are recent trade pickups that were also pretty obvious 40-man roster additions. Brinson, Phillips, Hader and Cordell all have significant experience at Double-A or above and Brinson and Hader are solid candidates to be in next February's Top 100 Prospects list. Cordell, the player-to-be-named from last season's Jonathan Lucroy/Jeremy Jeffress trade, has always hit but faces questions about his defensive position. Phillips had a brutal 2016 season, but that came on the heels of an excellent 2015 season that saw him emerge on the prospect map.

Williams is an interesting addition. He ranked 22nd on Baseball America’s Brewers’ Top 30 Prospects list coming into the season, but he hasn’t thrown an official pitch in two seasons. He tried to rehab an elbow injury and when that didn’t work he had to have Tommy John surgery. It may seem unlikely that a pitcher with a two-year gap on his resume would be picked in the Rule 5 draft, but he had a 94-98 mph fastball pre-injury and as the Braves showed with RHP Daniel Winkler, a rehabbing pitcher actually makes it easier to keep him on the 40-man roster in some ways. Players only have to stay on the active roster for 90 days (if they spend time on the disabled list).

Minnesota Twins (39): Added RHP Felix Jorge, RHP Fernando Romero, C Mitch Garver, SS Engelb Vielma, OF Zack Granite and OF Daniel Palka.

Jorge is a four-pitch starter with modest low-90s velocity but feel for pitching, good downward plne on his fastball and the ability to stay ahead of hitters by mixing his pitches. His control is some of the best in the organization.

If Jorge hits his spots, Romero tries to throw it through the backstop. He'll touch 100 mph at his best with a quality slider and a useable changeup. He would have been an easy choice for a team to pick if he had not been added to the Twins' 40-man roster.

Garver has always been a hit-first catcher, but his glove and game calling has improved to the point where he is a viable big league option.

Vielma's power could be measured with a micrometer (he has two home runs as a pro in 421 games), but he's a shortstop/middle infielder with the quick hands and actions scouts look for.

Granite is a speedy center fielder who knows how to draw a walk and steal bushels of bases (56 in 2016).

On a day where the Twins waived Adam Brett Walker, they added a hitter with just as much power. Palka's 63 home runs over the past two seasons is the most in the minors. The former Georgia Tech Yellow Jacket was acquired from the Diamondbacks last offseason in the Chris Herrmann trade.

New York Mets (39): Added SS Amed Rosario, C Tomas Nido, OF Wuilmer Becerra, RHP Marcos Molina and RHP Chris Flexen.

Rosario is one of the top prospects in the game, so he was one of the easiest players to project as an addition we'll see all day; Nido had a breakout season in the Florida State League hitting .320. Catchers without experience above Class A are a very risky demographic for teams to pick (Diamondbacks' Rule 5 pick Oscar Hernandez is the only player of note to fit that description this century), but with Nido's bat, the Mets didn't want to take the chance; A year ago, the Mets gambled that Becerra would slide through the Rule 5 draft because he had yet to play above low Class A. After a full year in high Class A, the Mets weren't willing to take that chance again and protected the toolsy outfielder; Molina is coming off missing a year and a half recovering from Tommy John surgery, but he showed his 93-95 mph fastball was back in a solid but rusty stint in the Arizona Fall League, so the Mets didn't want to risk leaving him available, even if he's barely pitched in full season ball as a pro (41 innings in high Class A in 2015); Flexen is the surprise addition of the group. He's yet to pitch above Class A and his year in the Florida State League was solid but unspectacular (3.56 ERA, 3.4 BB/9, 6.4 K/9). The stuff is solid, but not exceptional and he doesn't fit the profile of the pitchers normally picked in the Rule 5.

New York Yankees (40): Added RHP Domingo German and C Kyle Higashioka3B Miguel Andjuar, LHP Dietrich Enns, RHP Giovanny Gallegos, RHP Ronald Herrera, SS/2B Jorge Mateo and RHP Yefrey Ramirez.

Andujar is too much of a free swinger but he has a chance to be an everyday third baseman. His power disappeared after a promotion to Double-A Trenton, but with experience above Class A and his tools (which includes plus power potential) he would be a risk to leave unprotected.

Enns, available in last year’s Rule 5 draft, lacks a plus pitch, but with excellent control and an ability to stay a step ahead of hitters, he was so dominant in 2016 (14-4, 1.73) that he played himself onto the 40-man roster.

Mateo didn't have the best 2016 season, but he has 80 speed and the bat speed to catch up to velocity. He probably ends up in center field long term, but he's also played shortstop and second base.

Gallegos, available in last year’s Rule 5 draft, is a two-pitch reliever, but those two pitches are both very solid. His 92-95 mph fastball has tail and life and his curveball will flash plus.

Herrera has four pitches and some feel to go with his solid-average stuff. Ramirez's slider and changeup give him a chance to be a big leaguer when paired with his low-90s fastball.

German was an easy decision to add. He was acquired in the David Phelps/Martin Prado/Nate Eovaldi trade in Dec. 2014 but spent the entire 2015 season on the disabled list recovering from Tommy John surgery. He made it back to the mound in the middle of the 2016 season. While he showed some rust, the stuff returned to form as German even touched 100 mph at his bet.

German was an easy decision to add. He was acquired in the David Phelps/Martin Prado/Nate Eovaldi trade in Dec. 2014 but spent the entire 2015 season on the disabled list recovering from Tommy John surgery. He made it back to the mound in the middle of the 2016 season. While he showed some rust, the stuff returned to form as German even touched 100 mph at his bet.

Higashioka played his way onto the 40-man for the first time with a breakout year at Double-A and Triple-A. He had been Rule 5 eligible multiple times without ever really being considered as a risk to be taken, but that was before he hit 21 home runs this year. He’d hit 30 in eight seasons before this year.

Oakland Athletics (40): Added SS Franklin Barreto, RHP Paul Blackburn, OF Jaycob Brugman, SS Yairo Muñoz and RHP Bobby Wahl
Barreto is an easy choice as the top prospect in the organization; he might not be a shortstop long-term, but his bat will carry him; Blackburn was acquired from the Mariners for Danny Valencia. The ground ball specialist pounds the lower zone with a 90-93 mph fastball; Brugman is an organization favorite with excellent fundamental skills who should see big league team in 2017; Munoz has some flashy tools, but lacks aptitude and is sometimes too flashy; and Wahl can touch 100 mph but has inconsistent secondary pitches and profiles as a reliever.

Philadelphia Phillies (40): Added RHP Drew Anderson, RHP Mark Appel, OF Dylan Cozens, LHP Elniery Garcia, C Andrew Knapp, RHP Ben Lively, RHP Ricardo Pinto, RHP Nick Pavetta, RHP Alberto Tirado, 2B Jesmuel Valentin, OF Nick Williams. Designated RHP David Buchanan and RHP Jimmy Cordero for assignment.

The Phillies ended one the more intriguing potential Rule 5 plotlines when they added former No. 1 overall pick Mark Appel to their 40-man roster. Appel, who was acquired before the season in the Vince Velasquez/Ken Giles trade, made only eight starts for Triple-A Lehigh Valley before having season-ending elbow surgery. Still, he showed enough with his mid-90s fastball, plus slider and above-average changeup the Phillies were compelled to keep him. Knapp, Cozens, Tirado, Pinto, Pivetta, Garcia and were all easy selections to be added Lively as organizational Top 30 prospects who performed in 2016, while Valentin and Williams have strong prospect pedigrees that overshadowed their poor performances last year. Anderson was the lone under-the-radar addition. The 2012 21st round pick missed all of 2015 after having Tommy John surgery, but came back and went 3-4, 2.70 with 78 strikeouts in 70 innings with low class A Lakewood and high Class A Clearwater.

Pittsburgh Pirates (40): Added 1B/OF Jose Osuna, RHP Dovydas Neverauskas and RHP Clay Holmes.

Osuna doesn't have a clear path to the big leagues in Pittsburgh with Josh Bell and John Jaso ahead of him at first base and a very crowded outfield with Andrew McCutchen, Gregory Polanco, Starling Marte and Austin Meadows. But he does control the strike zone with average power potential.

Neverauskas is another hard-throwing righthanded reliever, which is a phylum of pitchers that the Pirates love to stockpile in the upper minors. A native of Lithuania, Neverauskas could fit into the Pirates' bullpen in 2017 thanks to a 95-98 mph fastball and fringe-average control. Holmes, a 6-foot-5 righthander drafted in the ninth round in 2011 from an Alabama high school, has a low-90s fastball and complements it with a solid changeup and an improving curveball, but has inconsistent command.

St. Louis Cardinals (37): Added 2B Breyvic Valera, OF Magneuris Sierra, 2B Eliezer Alvarez, SS Edmundo Sosa and RHP Rowan Wick.

The Cardinals protected a number of players who slipped through the Rule 5 draft last year but may have not made it through give a second (or third) try.

Valera has been left unprotected in each of the two previous Rule 5 drafts, and he did make Baseball America's prospective prospects to watch for the 2014 Rule 5. But until this season, Valera was either too far away from the big leagues or too ineffective at the plate to be picked. A very strong half-season in Triple-A Memphis (.341/.417/.415), an excellent batting eye and the defensive versatility that could allow him to serve as a utility infielder inducted the Cardinals to protect the 24-year-old this offseason.

Alvarez was also a 2015 Rule 5 option that went unpicked, but that was before he'd even played a game in full season ball. A year later he's shown one of the more advanced bats in the Midwest League. He hit .323/.404/.476 and unlike most second baseman, he can really throw.

Sierra is one of the toolsiest outfielders in the Cardinals system. He was much better in his second try at low Class A Peoria, as he hit .307/.335/.395. He's a true center fielder with plus-plus speed. He needs to work on plate discipline and is a long way from big league ready.

Teammates with Alvarez and Sierra at low Class A Peoria, Sosa's bat isn't as advanced as Alvarez's but he's a true shortstop with hands, range and a good arm. The number of low Class A shortstops that sticks in the Rule 5 draft is very low, but no one wants to lose the next Everth Cabrera.

Wick was also available in last year's Rule 5 draft as a former outfielder who had converted to pitching to take advantage of his strong arm. Wick pairs a mid-90s fastball with a surprisingly impressive curveball.

Valera has been left unprotected in each of the two previous Rule 5 drafts, and he did make Baseball America's prospective prospects to watch for the 2014 Rule 5. But until this season, Valera was either too far away from the big leagues or too ineffective at the plate to be picked. A very strong half-season in Triple-A Memphis (.341/.417/.415), an excellent batting eye and the defensive versatility that could allow him to serve as a utility infielder inducted the Cardinals to protect the 24-year-old this offseason.

San Diego Padres (40): Added SS Javier Guerra, OF Franchy Cordero, RHP Walker Lockett and RHP Jose Ruiz.

Three players who elevated themselves as prospects and one who dropped dramatically make up the Padres crop of 40-man additions. Cordero had his best season as a pro to position himself for a callup next year as a fourth outfielder, while Lockett rose from low Class A all the way to Triple-A and has a chance to eat some innings for the Padres next year. Ruiz is further away because the former catcher has converted to pitching and is touching the upper 90s as he learns the finer points of pitching in the low minors. He struck out 12 in 10 1/3 innings with short-season Tri-City. Guerra will repeat high Class A Lake Elsinore after hitting .202 and committing an organization-high 30 errors, but the Padres believe his upside remains and was worth protecting from the Rule 5 draft. The Padres outrighted first baseman Brett Wallace to make room for the moves.

San Francisco Giants (35): Added RHP Reyes Moronta, RHP Chase Johnson, RHP Dan Slania, 3B Miguel Gomez and SS Orlando Calixte.

The Giants had recently signed Calixte as a minor league free agent, but enough teams were intrigued by Calixte’s combination of glove and power that they were worried they’d lose him in the Rule 5 draft. Calixte ranked five times on the Royals Top 30 Prospects list, peaking at No. 7 heading into 2013. Moronta is a dominating, hard-throwing reliever who has touched 100 mph. Johnson’s combination of stuff and a deceptive delivery didn’t work as well in Double-A in 2016 as it had in high Class A in 2015. Slania had a breakthrough year as the massive (6-foot-5, 275-pound) former Notre Dame pitcher jumped three levels during the season (up to Triple-A), throwing strikes with solid stuff at all three stops. A 2011 signee, Gomez didn’t make it to the U.S. until 2015 and didn’t make it to full season ball until this year, but he hit .371/.401/.532 with low Class A Augusta before a promotion to high Class A. Production like that tends to get noticed and it wasn’t a fluke as Gomez has solid contact skills. A move from catcher to third base lessened his defensive responsibilities as well.

Seattle Mariners (40): Added LHP Paul Fry, 1B D.J. Peterson, and RHP Thyago Vieira

The Mariners protected the latest bullpen sensation, Brazilian righthander Vieira, who was clocked repeatedly at 102 mph during the season and 104 mph in the Arizona Fall League. He previously struggled to maintain any semblance of control, but mechanical refinements under high Class A Bakersfield pitching coach Ethan Katz got him on line to the plate and led to his best season yet. He is a closer in the making as long as he keeps his newfound mechanics. Peterson, the largely disappointing 2013 first-rounder, had a bounceback year between Double-A and Triple-A before a broken finger suffered fielding ground ball on Aug. 22 ended his season. Fry is ready to contribute in the majors as a lefthanded specialist, with a low 90s fastball and above-average slider that profiles well at the next level.

Tampa Bay Rays (40): Added SS Willy Adames, RHP Chih-Wei Hu, RHP Austin Pruitt, SS/2B Daniel Robertson, RHP Jaime Schultz, RHP Ryne Stanek, RHP Hunter Wood and LHP Jose Alvarado.

Adames is the Rays' No. 1 prospect and one of the best shortstop prospects in the game, so he was a no-brainer addition.

Hu, the Rays No. 5 prospect, was also an obvious addition. He is a Futures Game alumni with Double-A success. He's slated to head to Triple-A in 2017 but it's not out of the question that he could pitch in St. Pete next year.

Robertson has nearly a full season in Triple-A under his belt and he has demonstrated some defensive versatility with starts at second base, shortstop and third base, so he could compete for a utility job next season.

Schultz and Stanek are a pair of very hard-throwing righthanders. Stanek sits in the high-90s and has touched 100 mph, although his control wavers and he's had durability issues in the past. Schultz has yet to make a relief appearance as a pro, but there are numerous scouts who believe his long-term big league role is as a power reliever.

Pruitt is the most surprising addition. He had the best 2016 debut of anyone in the minors. Pruitt struck out 22 and walked no one in his first two starts of the season (over 13 innings). And Pruitt finished the season with eight strikeouts and no walks in the season finale. That being said, Pruitt succeeds more with deception than stuff. His changeup and curveball are very effective.

Wood has a similar profile to Schultz, but gets more swings and misses with fastball; Alvarado has touched 100 mph, and has flashed a good breaking ball.

Texas Rangers (37): Added 2B/3B/OF Drew Robinson and 1B Ronald Guzman

Robinson went unprotected and unpicked in the 2015 Rule 5 Draft. He impresses scouts with his versatility and his lefthanded bat. Robinson played every position other than catcher this year while showing solid power (20 home runs) and an ability to draw walks that made up for his strikeouts. His arm allows him to make up for limited range defensively.

Guzman is a big (6-foot-5) lefthanded power bat. He's faced some questions about his bat speed, but he's coming off a .288/.348/.477 season at Double-A Frisco. The Rangers decided that after leaving him unprotected last year, he was worth a 40-man spot this year.

Toronto Blue Jays (34): Added OF Anthony Alford, SS Richard Urena, LHP Ryan Borucki and C A.J. Jimenez

The Blue Jays protected their No. 2 prospect by adding Alford to their 40-man roster. Alford was beset by injuries throughout the season but turned it on once he got back to full health, hitting .295/.412/.530 in his final 41 games with high Class A Dundein. He hit .253/.349/.440 in the Arizona Fall League. Urena is only 20 but already reached Double-A as one of Toronto's top prospects, and Borucki has been hampered by injuries but remains a 6-foot-4 lefthander who can touch 95 mph and flashes arguably the best changeup in the Blue Jays system. Jimenez is back on the 40-man roster after being designated for assignment last March so the Blue Jays could claim Jesus Montero. He fits the backup catcher profile, which while not sexy, is one that could get a player picked by a team looking for inexpensive catching depth.

Nationals (36): Added OF Rafael Bautista, 1B Jose Marmolejos, C Raudy Read, 3B/1B Matt Skole and RHP Austin Voth.

Voth has led the Nationals system in strikeouts each of the last three years and just wrapped up a successful stint in the Arizona Fall League, where he finished on a run of 15 straight scoreless innings. The 6-foot-2, 215-pound righthander sits just 88-91 mph with his fastball, but pristine control and a solid-average changeup and curveball keep hitters off-balance and have him propelling through the system. He ranked the Nats No. 9 prospect entering this season and has back-end starter potential. Bautista was ranked the Nationals No. 13 prospect coming into the year and .282 with 56 stolen bases at Double-A Harrisburg. His defense in center field is above-average-to-plus, making him an intriguing speed/defense fourth outfielder candidate. Read's combination of power at the plate and arm strength behind it had him ranked No. 23 in Washington's system, but he has yet to play above high Class A. Skole is coming off a 24-home run season at Triple-A Syracuse and has a career .365 on-base percentage, but his lack of consistent contact at higher levels and defensive shortcomings at third base make him more of a bench piece than everyday prospect. Marmelos is an unheralded prospect who hit .289 with 13 homers, 74 RBIs and 45 doubles this year between high Class A Potomac and Double-A Harrisburg.

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