What Would You Do? 40 Man Roster Decisions

16 Nov

also avaialble at www.SethSpeaks.net

Over the next week to ten days, the Twins will have to make some final decisions on their 40 man roster. There will be some tough decisions.

But before we get started, I should point out that it appears that Juan Morillo will now come off of the Twins 40 man roster as he has signed with a team in Japan. I wrote about that possibility here last week when I could come up with only one reason for his addition to the Twins 40 man roster. It appears that the Twins should have temporarily kept Justin Huber on the 40 man roster too as he is close to signing in Japan as well and the Twins may have got some money for him as well.

Technically the Twins have 40 players on their 40 man roster. However, the Twins five internal free agents will come off of the roster unless the Twins decide to sign one of them quickly. There are (too many) rumors about the Twins talking to Orlando Cabrera about playing 2B. That would be horrible, so we can assume that won’t happen. Right? There is also talk of conversations with Scott Boras regarding Joe Crede. Again, I understand some think that would be a good thing. Personally, I am just not a fan of that idea. Carl Pavano would be a solid #4 type of pitcher and the Twins should consider the idea of bringing him back, if the price is right. However, the assumption is that there will be several teams interested in his services, and hence, he probably would not sign quickly. Ron Mahay would make sense if the Twins didn’t have several other left-handers who could either start or be a second lefty reliever. Mike Redmond is a good guy and a good teammate, but bringing him back makes no sense.

So, I will work under the assumption that all five will be off of the 40 man roster, which would put the Twins at 35.

If you checked out the TwinsCentric Offseason GM Handbook (which is still available as an e-book or a print version), there was an article on the 40 man roster called “Nine to Note.” Information was given on nine players that the Twins should consider adding to the 40 man roster. Of those nine players to consider, two of them (David Winfree and Brock Peterson) were not added to the 40 man roster and can become free agents. The Twins can bring them back if they want, but they will not be added to the 40 man roster. And to this point, the only player added to the Twins 40 man roster was Juan Morillo, who was not even considered among the nine. And now I don’t look quite so dumb!

So, let’s get back to this week. Again, the Twins are likely going to be at 35 players on the 40 man roster. If that is the case, there are four spots available. However, are there others that can be removed from the 40 man roster? Last week, Justin Huber was removed. The Twins tried to take Armando Gabino off of the 40 man roster, but in doing so, he was claimed by the Orioles. So as the Twins make these decisions, they will have to consider a couple of things. If the Twins take the player off of the 40 man roster, would they be lost to another organization? Is the player that would be added better (or a better fit for need) than the one who would be removed? 

With that, let’s take a look at a few guys that the Twins could consider removing from the 40 man roster:

  • Bobby Keppel – in 2009, the Twins saw what Keppel can be. They saw the very good and the saw the very bad, all within his three month stint with the team. Since he is out of options, he would have to make the Twins roster and stay on it, or potentially be lost. With Morillo and Bonser also out of options, and Pat Neshek likely coming back at some point, what are the chances of Keppel making the Twins roster?
  • Boof Bonser, Jesse Crain and Pat Neshek – All three are arbitration eligible this year. All three have had injuries and missed time in the last couple of years. All three have experienced big league success. And, I am pretty sure that if taken off the 40 man roster, all three of them would be gone.
  • Glen Perkins – It’s hard to imagine that he will be back with the Twins, but can he be traded?
  • Drew Butera – Can’t hit. Led International League in Passed Balls, but still known to do a good job of calling games and throwing. Can’t hit. At all. There are a lot of backup catchers around who can throw runners out who will play for $750,000, if the Twins even needed that.
  • Alexi Casilla, Matt Tolbert, Steve Tolleson, Nick Punto, Trevor Plouffe – They’re all the same. Play a little defense. Play a couple of positions. Hit once in a while, but not necessarily well. How many backup infielders are needed? Obviously Punto and his $4 million deal aren’t going anywhere. Casilla is out of options. Plouffe is at least young. He is probably the only player who would be lost if left unprotected. He would certainly be claimed.
  • Deibinson Romero – He’s all about the tools, apparently. He’s a big guy, strong. And, the reality is that he hasn’t actually produced much since he was in the rookie leagues. He’s 23 already. The tools are all there. The effort has been questioned.
  • Luke Hughes – I keep hearing people say that he could be removed. If he is, he would be claimed by the first team who could. He’s not going anywhere.
  • Jason Pridie – very good defense. Left-handed bat who refuses to walk. Has some pop in his bat. With Carlos Gomez now gone, the Twins need a 5th outfielder who can play all three outfielders, including centerfield. Other option would be to let him go and sign a veteran outfielder who could pinch hit. Pridie does have one more option year left.

OK, so we started at 35. Will the Twins sign any of those five internal free agents before the 40 man roster is set? How many from the current 40 man roster would you remove?

Now let’s consider the players who would have to be added to the 40 man roster or left subject to the Rule 5 draft. Note that if they are not selected in the Rule 5 draft, they would stay in the organization unless they are six year minor league free agents. 

The Obvious Additions:

  • Danny Valencia – Whether everyone considers him the 3B of 2010, or the 3B of the Future, or a possible 3B, he has experienced success at each level including AAA. If left unprotected, he would be gone.
  • Deolis Guerra – He’s 20. He showed much improved control in 2009. He’s got three potentially big league pitches. He’s had success in AA. Again, this is an easy choice as his potential alone makes him a target for some Rule 5 team.
  • Alex Burnett – The Rule 5 is about finding players with either high upside and can be hidden on a roster, or about guys who can contribute to any degree with the big league club. Burnett fits into both categories as he could already contribute to a big league team’s bullpen and he has tremendous upside in a bullpen.

Must Strongly Consider:

  • Loek Van Mil – He’s 7-1, and he throws 95-97. He should probably be in the obvious category too. His strikeout numbers don’t shout out at you, but the stuff does. Tall pitchers take a little longer to develop because they need to find their release point. As an international player, you can assume a longer learning curve too. Adding him to the 40 man roster gives three more years to develop. But again, his pitching angle and the velocity make Van Mil a likely choice.
  • Rob Delaney – since being signed as a non-drafted free agent out of college in 2006, Delaney has dominated the minor leagues. He gets strikeouts and he walks very few. He struggled some in Rochester, but I think his track record makes him an easy choice. The fact that he could help a big league bullpen today makes him an easy choice. How many bullpen guys will they put on the roster? That’s the only question.
  • Steve Singleton – Good glove. Can play 2B, 3B and SS. Can hit 2nd in a batting order, or at the bottom of the order. Can hit for average. Is best when he is patient. Has good power for a middle infielder. Lots of doubles and triples. Can play very good defense.
  • Brian Dinkelman – Put up terrific numbers in New Britain. Doubles machine. He is two years older than Singleton. Played a lot of LF once Singleton promoted to AA. That gives him a better chance of being added. Defense is not spectacular either place, but he does make almost all the plays.

Should at least think about:

  • Santos Arias – The Dominican righty had a very good year in 2009 in Ft. Myers. Good fastball. Durable. Very good changeup. Has a lot of room to grow.
  • Winston Marquez – Left-handed. Young. Throws hard. Good slider. Missed 2008 with injury and Twins were patient with him in 2009.
  • Matt Fox – Again, he could pitch in the big leagues, in the back of a bullpen. He could handle it well mentally. And the former #1 pick has been able to get stronger and better each year since coming back from Tommy John surgery. Also, his cutter is very tough on lefties.

Others that are eligible include Juan Portes, Kyle Waldrop, Estarlin de Los Santos, Dustin Martin, Whit Robbins, Ramon Santana, Matt Williams, Brandon Roberts, Ryan Mullins, Frank Mata, Mark Dolenc, Rene Leveret, Jair Fernandez, and Alexander Soto.

Also, Rene Tosoni, David Bromberg and Anthony Slama do not need to be added to the 40 man roster at this time, so they will not be added.

Again, you’re starting at 35 players. You can take a few more off of the 40 man roster. You could quickly sign some of your internal free agents. You will want to add a bunch. Do you want to fill all 40 roster spots, or do you keep one or two open so that you can take a pick or two in the Rule 5 draft. What do you think? What would you do? Send me an e-mail, or leave your Comments here.

32 Responses to “What Would You Do? 40 Man Roster Decisions”

  1. Bryz November 16, 2009 at 12:19 am #

    Good to hear that Anthony Slama doesn’t have to be added yet.

  2. roger November 16, 2009 at 7:13 am #

    Welcome back Seth! In my relief pitcher article yesterday Adam commented that he thought Guerra may not be eligible this year. Looking back overy his history he gets into that grey area dealing with when signed, change of rules in the new CBA, etc. Have you confirmed that he does need to be added this year?

    The Twins have a huge problem, to many similar infielders that should be untility role players. We already have five on the roster. Lets assume that Punto is the starting second baseman and Plouffe is a potential future starting shortstop (maybe?). That leave Tolleson, Tolbert and Casilla already on the roster with two more waiting in the wings…Dinkelman and Singleton. I think the Twins have to keep two at the most. It wouldn’t surprise me if Tolleson gets optioned out to Rochester with the Twins adding one of Dinkelman/Singleton. They may also not add the better of the two…rather the one who they view as having the highest risk of being lost (could be the same however). They also need to do something with Casilla before spring. But the type of trade where we trade a couple guys for one isn’t likely to happen before Friday.

  3. sam November 16, 2009 at 9:57 am #

    what does luke hughes do that well no glove not a very good arm he has some power but no more than winfree or peterson .best place is 2 baes and the twins have about 6 of them on the 40 man now…..

  4. Bill in Sarasota November 16, 2009 at 10:10 am #

    I would add Delaney as the 39th man and leave the 40th open.

    He is the closest to the Twins and AAA RP are usually taken in the Rule 5 draft.

    I wouldn’t add a 40th because of the following three reasons:
    – just in case another organization leaves a super prospect off their 40 man roster
    – Twins need to sign at least one free agent (SP and 3B)
    – Next year the Twins will need to add at least 7 players (Tosoni, Slama, Bromberg, Revere, Robertson, Parmelee, Benson, Hirschfiled, McCardell) to the 40 man roster.

  5. mike wants wins November 16, 2009 at 10:35 am #

    There is no reason to keep Butera on the 40 man. Who’s going to claim him, and if they do, what have they really lost?

    I’d also remove Tolleson. What does he bring that any of those others don’t? Who’s going to claim him? And, so what if they lose him, given the other options they have.

    Your obvious choices to be added need to be added.

    Add Delaney, Singelton, and Dinkleman, and see if they latter two can hit in AAA next year.

    That leave them at 39, I think.

    I’m also assuming Perkins is traded at some point.

    If I need the space, my next guy to take off is Keppel. They have Slama and Delaney that can do what Keppel did (or better) last year.

  6. Joel Thingvall November 16, 2009 at 11:22 am #

    The Twins have to make a decision, quickly, on Harris (too expensive), Perkins (who is not arbitration eligible), Boof (is he worth a million to repeat his work in the past), Crain (worth $2 and the potential to be a closer…but probably not with the Twins), Keppel (dime a dozen…if you’re going to have a 7th slop-up guy, better Boof or Perkins, or even better yet, one of the newly added 40-mans.

    If Huber signs with Japan, it was a surprise to the Twins who were hoping he’d return to Rochester to be backup for Morneau (if a call-up was needed). But money talks. I think they added Morillo just so they could sell him to Japan. Smart move there.

    What a mess. Plouffe, Casilla, Tolleson, Harris, Tolbert, Hughes + Punto. That alone is a logjam of too many. Add in Dinkelman, Singleton + Valencia. Ten guys. You REALLY only need to keep five (2B, 3B, two backups, one prospect). Looks like Valencia and Casilla, Punto and Tolbert, and Plouffe. Take a chance on the other parts getting thru waivers and/or draft. To fill Rochester, you can always find more Matt Macri’s.

    I guess would keep Pridie as long as he has an option year left. Otherwise, I wouldn’t have. Martin, Roberts…both could be passed by Tosoni if a call-up was needed for the corner spots in 2010.

    Butera. Well, be interesting to see if he finds work elsewhere. I wished the Twins HAD called him up for a small cup-of-coffee in September. It would have made his family happy, and made him a small part of the Twins. With Mauer and Morales, the Twins have Ramos in the wings, who will also start for the Wings. Butera is a ncie guy to have in the minors (as was Jeff Christey), but the Twins seem to find the Danny Ardoins, Eli Whitesides, Cooky Millers when the need happens.

    Debinson Romero…would they have lsot him in the minor league portion two years ago? Now that they have attracted attention to him, chance are they’ll lose him. Depends on the faith the team has in Danny Valencia. The Twins could be stripped of third-base so-so prospects this year (Romero, Hughes, Tolleson and the ilk, Whit Robbins, Matt Moses — all going elsewhere). Hummmm…do I see a contract extension for Nicky Punto in my crystal ball?

    Pitching will be a delight to watch…who is added. Who will get taken in the minor league portion. Again, the Rule 5 means a team has to keep the guy ALL YEAR or offer him back, so the Twins can take a flyer on such folks as Van Mil and even Arias and Marquez. The pain is…minor league draft eligibility. The Twins will be looking in this arena, too, so they can offset their own losses.

    What are the rules of the minor league portion — you have to draft A-lvele (or is it AA level) prospects and keep them at the same level or above?

    Hey, Eddie Morlan is still out there!

    • Jeremy November 16, 2009 at 6:10 pm #

      “What are the rules of the minor league portion?”

      Clubs can protect 40 players from the Major league portion of the Rule V draft.

      Clubs can protect 38 players from the AAA portion of the draft (plus their other 40).

      Clubs can protect 37 players from the AA portion of the draft (plus their other 78).

      Players drafted in the minor league portion neither have to have played at that level nor need to play at that level of the drafting team.

      So to my understanding, all of the Twins eligible Rule V guys could be protected on the AAA roster, so they would have to be drafted in the Major League portion. The same way players who have only played at low levels, could be placed on the AAA roster to be protected from the minor league portion of the draft.

      Minor League FA’s can be found here:


  7. Ben November 16, 2009 at 12:28 pm #

    I think there’s a good chance the Twins are trying to trade Casilla and will cut him if they can’t.

  8. TT November 16, 2009 at 12:33 pm #

    “Who’s going to claim him, and if they do, what have they really lost?”

    Butera would be claimed and they may have lost their best backup catcher. Morales has a better bat, but Butera has the glove at a defensive position. Ramos may have the physical tools, but its not clear he is ready to catch in the big leagues.

    “What does he bring that any of those others don’t?”

    You can flip that around and release the “others”. Tolleson has one year at AAA. Its probably a little early to give up on him. His bat will play in the big leagues, the question is whether he can play defense.

    Pitchers are obvious targets for the Rule 5 draft, but they have to be close enough to the big leagues to be kept on the roster for a season.

    I think Burnett and Guerra are no-brainers. Kyle Waldrop also seems like a likely target for a Rule 5 pickup. Van Mil may not be close enough to the big leagues. I think his ceiling would have to be higher for someone to take a run at him. Fox is a puzzle. He is too old to be picked up based on projected development and its not clear he is ready now. Delaney is similar to Fox, too old to take on projection and its not clear he is ready to help now.

    Arias and Marquez being targets depends on their projected upside. Is it worth wasting a roster spot for a year. Sort of like the Twins did with Santana.

    I don’t think its inaccurate to say Valencia had success at AAA. He had two weeks of hot hitting followed by a half season of dismal performance at the plate and in the field. Apparently the Twins have not given up on him, so it is likely he will be added to the roster.

    Is Singleton really a plus major league defensive shortstop? If so, then he is a no-brainer. My impression was that he projected as a second baseman. He still warrants consideration given his bat.

    I doubt Dinkelman is a roster candidate. He apparently doesn’t have the glove/range to play the infield and I doubt he has the bat to be a corner outfielder.

    There continues to be some questions about Tosoni being eligible. I assume you have confirmed this, but I have never heard an explanation for it. If Tosoni was drafted in 2005 and signed in 2006, he was over 19 when signed and has had his three exemptions from the Rule 5 draft. The only explanation I can think of is that they waited until after the 2006 Rule 5 draft to formalize his contract.

    Can the Twins keep control of Morillo’s major league rights if he goes to Japan? That is certainly an explanation for adding him to the roster. He could come back in a couple years as a real asset.

  9. TT November 16, 2009 at 12:35 pm #

    That should say “I don’t think its accurate to say Valencia had success at AAA.”

  10. GBG November 16, 2009 at 12:51 pm #

    I see no reason to keep Romero on the 40-man. He’s not going to jump from A ball to the majors. Same with Butera, he’s not going anywhere and if so, it’s not a great loss.

    I’d bump Singleton into the “obvious additions” – he strikes me as the best of the crop of utility players we’ve got.

    What does the signing of Hardy mean for Plouffe? I know Plouffe wasn’t going to be our 2010 shortstop, but Hardy’s under contract through 2011, right?

  11. GBG November 16, 2009 at 12:52 pm #

    Sorry – “Hardy’s under CONTROL until 2011” – thinking one thing, typing another…

  12. Bill in Sarasota November 16, 2009 at 12:59 pm #

    Tosoni signed in May of 2006. He was 18 when the draft occurred in June 2005. From my understanding, since he didn’t sign until the 2006 season and MLB goes by age on draft day, he’s not eligible for the Rule 5 draft until 2010 (5th season if under 19 on draft day).
    Under the new rules, players must sign by August so this exception will not occur in the future.

  13. mike wants wins November 16, 2009 at 1:00 pm #

    Butera’s D is SO good, that he makes up for being an automatic out? I’m not sure how that is even possible at the catcher position. Defensive stats, as someone is pointing out on THT right now, are not well developed for catchers. I just don’t think it matters if he’s gone or not.

  14. Bill in Sarasota November 16, 2009 at 1:04 pm #

    If dropped off the 40 man roster, players must go through waivers and those players if claimed do not need to be on a MLB roster like the Rule 5 selections.
    Therefore Romero and Butera would be selected by another organization since they wouldn’t have to stay on a MLB 25 man roster.

  15. Kyle November 16, 2009 at 3:44 pm #

    Just wondering about Tim Lahey, Danny Berg, Matt Moses, and Erik Lis. All were listed on your list of eligible players last year: http://sethspeaks.net/111908b.htm Are they minor league free agents? I know Brock Peterson and David Winfree (also on that list) are. Also what about players that were drafted in the Rule V in previous years such as Jason Jones (although I highly doubt he would be desirable to many teams…)?

  16. Jeremy November 16, 2009 at 4:16 pm #

    I would find a way to add Valencia, Guerra, Burnett, Singleton, Delaney and Van Mil. Twins pitchers always seemed to get plucked.

    I have a feeling that all those guys (except for maybe Van Mil) could get picked. If they don’t protect Van Mil and he gets drafted, I would consider that a loss. If they don’t protect him and he goes undrafted, the front office looks good.

    Can’t wait til it’s all said and done.

  17. IA twins fan November 16, 2009 at 4:24 pm #

    Seth, Do you have any insights into the defensive abilities of the utility infielder logjam? The minor league statistics I can find would rate Plouffe, Singleton, and Dinkelman as above average. Casilla, Tolbert, Tolleson as below average. Gardy is going to want back ups who can pick it.

  18. JA November 16, 2009 at 5:09 pm #

    Hi Seth,
    I have watching this for awhile. Here’s is how I see it.
    currently 35:
    Harris non-tendered
    Bonser non-tendered
    Removed, now 31
    32. Cabrara re-signed
    33. Pavano re-signed
    34. Valencia
    35. Singleton
    36. Guerra
    37. Burnett
    38. Dinkleman
    39. Delaney
    40. Open
    But many of these decisions will be based upon the organizations feelings on players like Perkins, Pridie, Bonser, and others. Gardy really seems to like O-cab, and I do not see a strong market for him as a ss, let’s just hope its a 1 year deal. Pavano, well they really like him. Many other teams all in similar situations, hopefully we won’t lose someone who becomes a everyday regular.

  19. flatblade November 16, 2009 at 5:42 pm #

    Like everyone else above, I see too many middle infielders with limited upsides. I think Harris should be non-tendered, since he isn’t a starter and doesn’t offer what is needed in today’s short bench rosters (speed, defense, power). The Twins may well lose a middle infielder. If that guy has no better skills than the ones they kept, it is no loss. I also think Pridie should be demoted. Replacements for him (mostly from outside the organization) are all over the place and if someone wants him, let him go. Keppel should be demoted, as well. I hope the Twins can keep him (he does have a really good sinker, but not great command) but it won’t be the end of the world if he is lost.

  20. Han Joelo November 16, 2009 at 7:01 pm #

    While I’m not particularly a Butera fan, with Redmond gone, he’s the de facto backup-backup catcher, unless the Twins brass decides (right now) that Ramos is ready. Even if he were to pass through waivers, having your backup-backup NOT on the 40 man makes little sense; he’d have to be added in the event of an injury to Morales or Mauer.

    At any rate, whether it is Butera or someone else (besides Ramos) a 40 man spot needs to be reserved for a catcher, probably.

  21. Peter Jenkins November 16, 2009 at 7:29 pm #

    Valencia, Van Mil, Burnett and Singleton should definately be added. I’m not as high on Guerra as most of you. Sure, he’s young, but his stuff isn’t anything more than average from what I’ve seen.

    Seth, could you do a Q&A with Loek Van Mil? Last august in New Britain, he told me he’not that much of a media person, but it would be nice to hear him out.

  22. TT November 16, 2009 at 7:43 pm #

    “At any rate, whether it is Butera or someone else (besides Ramos) a 40 man spot needs to be reserved for a catcher, probably.”

    The same goes for an outfielder. But it is important to remember the decisions now are who to bring to compete in spring training. Some of the losers from that competition are likely to open up roster spots.

    “I also think Pridie should be demoted. Replacements for him (mostly from outside the organization) are all over the place ”

    I don’t think that is true. I don’t know where the idea comes that there is this huge surplus of major league quality players of any kind. The same with the idea that there is some equivalancy between Harris and guys like Tolleson, Dinkelman, etc. Harris has the skills to be an everyday player if needed. Its not clear those other guys have the skills to sit on a major league bench as emergency replacements.

    People need to take another look at the numbers Casilla and Tolbert were putting up when they were called up. They were killing minor league pitching. Casilla hit .340 at Rochester and Tolbert started slow but was hitting well over .300 the last month before he was recalled. Tolleson’s bat is his strength and he was hitting .270. Valencia started hot, but he hit under .250 for the second half of the season.

    You may be only one step away from the big leagues at AAA, but it is a very large step. More like a wall you need to be able to leap over. Most players who get to AAA, never take that next step. And even of those that do, many fall back quickly.

  23. TT November 16, 2009 at 7:58 pm #

    “MLB goes by age on draft day”

    Bill – every source I have seen says it is the age when he signed a contract. That may have changed, but I can’t find a report to that effect.

  24. Bill in Sarasota November 17, 2009 at 8:01 am #


    BA has 1995 article (Google Rule 5 draft):

    “Players who were 18 or younger on June 5 preceding the signing of their first contract must be protected after four minor league seasons. Players 19 and older must be protected after three seasons.”

    A few years ago the protection years were increased by one.

    It does make sense for the clubs to avoid additional signing pressure if player’s birth date is in June, July, or August.

    • TT November 17, 2009 at 8:47 am #

      Bill –

      Tosoni was born July 2, 1986, so he turned 19 in 2005. But if he was signed before June 5, 2006, then he is protected from four drafts instead of three since he was 18 on the June 5th preceding his contract. That was piece missing.

      BTW – the “minor league season” stuff is a little misleading. Eligibility is based on whether they were signed when the rule 5 draft occurred. Tosoni didn’t actually play in 2006, but that won’t make any difference. The clock on Gibson, for instance, starts this year even though he didn’t play last summer.

      • Bill in Sarasota November 17, 2009 at 12:09 pm #

        Seasons really should be number of years under contract.

  25. roger November 17, 2009 at 3:18 pm #

    The CBA that was signed a year ago or so changed the Rule V draft. It added a year, changed it to age on date of draft and changed the signing day to August 15th or so, so that the different college starting dates don’t effect anything. They also did away with the old Draft and Follow. Now, there appears to be some difference in how players drafted under the old system are treated. It is to ambiguous for me to understand and I will go by what Seth has said because I suspect he has talked to people in the organization who know.

  26. Michael November 18, 2009 at 8:45 am #

    Valencia is the only position player I would protect. Only 9 position players were even drafted in the last two Rule 5 drafts combined (compared to 30 pitchers). Even then, most were either returned to the original team or a trade was worked out.

    Are either Dinkelman or Singleton going to help a major league team enough to stay on a 25 man roster for a full year? Why would the Twins use a 40 man roster spot for somebody they’re not likely to lose?

  27. TT November 18, 2009 at 6:44 pm #

    “Are either Dinkelman or Singleton going to help a major league team enough to stay on a 25 man roster for a full year?”

    That depends on whether they can play defense. If they have major league defensive skills, then they can sit on the bench as utility players. I think you will find that, after pitchers, middle infielders are the most likely guys to get taken.

    “Only 9 position players were even drafted in the last two Rule 5 drafts combined”

    Pitchers are the most likely to be taken. That is because they can be hidden in the back of the bullpen and because good arms are hard to come. So they are worth the risk. That doesn’t mean the Twins won’t lose a position player if they make the wrong choice.

    • Michael November 19, 2009 at 8:41 am #

      Four of the position players selected in the last two Rule 5 drafts were infielders. Three of the four were returned to their original team. I think we’re overly concerned about losing position players to the Rule 5 draft when very few are ever lost.

      Also, the Twins could be making the “wrong choice” by adding these players to the 40 man roster. Those players are then taking roster spots that the team may need at a later point. That’s the situation the Twins face with Luke Hughes. If the Twins tried to take him off the 40 man roster at this point, he would get claimed in a heart beat.

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