Many of our minds turned to the off-season weeks ago. One of the more exciting parts of the off-season is the Rule 5 draft, which is used to prevent good players from languishing on the minor league squads of teams with heavily stocked farm systems. MLBTradeRumors gives a good, understandable description of how the Rule 5 draft works, but here's a quick refresher as to what players are eligible to be selected:
A recent AP News article suggested that the Astros might have a tough decision this offseason as to whether or not Koby Clemens should be placed on the Astros 40-man roster to protect him from getting Rule 5-ed to another team. This made me curious, so I went through the rosters and picked out the players who would be Rule 5 eligible.
After the jump, you'll find the full list. I've provided links to the Baseball-Reference pages of the 6 players who will probably receive the most consideration for being protected on the 40-man this offseason. For those of you who don't want to click through, those players are Fernando Abad, Drew Locke, Sergio Perez, Jimmy VanOstrand, Koby Clemens, and Henry Villar.
Quick Disclaimer: This is my first time figuring out this sort of stuff, so you may want to take the list as a work-in-progress until someone who knows better (i.e. farmstros) has had a chance to look it over.
Already On The 40-Man
These guys would be protected if they held the draft today. To be removed from the 40-man, I believe that they'd have to be Designated For Assignment, which would leave them open to waivers from other teams.
AAA - Round Rock
AA - Corpus Christi
A+ - Lancaster
A - Lexington
A - Tricity