Rays Deal With Rule 5 Losses

ST. PETERSBURG—Losing two players in the first round of the Rule 5 draft, including the top overall pick for the second straight year, suggests the Rays are either good at producing prospects or bad at deciding which to protect.

In reality, it may be a bit of both.

“I think it is the cost of doing business,” executive vice president Chaim Bloom said. “I think we go into this with our eyes open. We know that some players might get taken. We have to be comfortable with that risk. In some ways it falls out of a good problem to have in that we have a lot of appealing players and we can’t protect them all.”

In 2014, the Rays were somewhat surprised that catcher Oscar Hernandez went first overall to the Diamondbacks, who got a bit of a break when an extended stint on the disabled list made him easier to keep.

This year, the Rays had a sense outfielders Tyler Goeddel and Joey Rickard might get taken. Goeddel went first to the Phillies and Rickard eighth to the Orioles. Both were under consideration to be protected, but the Rays drew the line after adding five other prospects: Minor League Player of the Year lefthander Blake Snell, outfielder Taylor Motter and righthanders Taylor Guerrieri, Jacob Faria and German Marquez. They also used a spot after claiming righthander Chase Whitley from the Yankees.

“Their ceilings in our mind weren’t as high as the five guys we protected and that’s what it comes down to,” farm director Mitch Lukevics said. “We have 40 spots, and someone is 41, someone is 42, someone is 43.”

Because Goeddel and Rickard are being righthanded corner outfielders without an outstanding individual tool, their chances to stick in the majors all year might be tough, so the Rays have a chance to get them back.

“Time will tell,” Bloom said. “It takes a long time for these stories to unfold and really see how everything went.”


• The Rays added three players in the minor league phase of the draft: lefthander Adam Kolarek (Orioles) and righthanders Yoel Espinal (Yankees) and Fernando Baez (Cardinals). They also lost catcher Maxx Tissenbaum, who hit .257 at high Class A and was taken by Miami.

• Righthander Jhan Marinez was re-signed to a minor league deal after he posted a 1.92 ERA in 45 games at Triple-A Durham.

Comments are closed.

Download our app

Read the newest magazine issue right on your phone