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The Sunday Read: Candidates for Rangers to protect from Rule 5 draft

(Texas Rangers/Ben Ludeman)



A baseball offseason is filled with deadlines, especially in the first few weeks after the World Series.

The first is the five-day wait period before full-fledged free agency opens, during which time teams and players have decisions to make on their options. The deadline to make qualifying offers follows a few days later.

Don’t forget about the non-tender deadline and the deadline to avoid arbitration.

Next up, though, is the setting of the reserve list, which for 364 of the 365 days of the year is called the 40-man roster.

That deadline is Tuesday, and it’s an important one for teams looking to preserve their farm systems and for minor-leaguers looking for their break into the majors.

Players will be added to the 40-man roster to avoid exposure to the Rule 5 draft, held annually during the winter meetings.

Two types of players are eligible:

Those who were signed at 18 years old or under and have been in the minors five years without being added to the 40-man.

Those who were signed at 19 or older and have been in the minors four years without being added to the 40-man.

If a team selects a player in the major-league phase of the draft, it must keep that player on the active/26-man roster all season. If a team doesn’t, that player must go through the waiver process and, if he clears, must be offered back to the team that lost him.

It’s a mess to keep track of. There are many players who qualify for the major-league and minor-league phases of the Rule 5. The Rangers are like the other 29 teams in that they have too many players they want to protect.

The Rangers have seven openings on the 40-man roster, but don’t expect them to protect more than four.

Some are no-brainers. Some of those not protected are going to make the Rangers sweat.

Here’s a breakdown:

Jeff Wilson

Sports reporter for two decades. Sports fan for life. Covers the Texas Rangers. Graduate of TCU. Colorado native. Author of Purple Passion: TCU Football Legends (https://t.co/2fmXLyympx). Follow me on Twitter at @JeffWilsonTXR

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1 Comment

  1. deGrom Texas Ranger November 13, 2023

    Why can’t they protect 7 and then drop those 3 from the 40 man roster once they acquire new players? It’s not like Hader, Bednar, and Clase are all joining today. Texas can acquire those guys after the rule 5 draft.


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