Mariners stand pat at Rule 5 roster deadline — see who is left unprotected
One offseason deadline for the Mariners is officially in the books as teams were required to set their 40-man rosters ahead of the Rule 5 draft by 5 p.m. Wednesday. For the Mariners, it was a quiet deadline day as they did not add any players to their 40-man. As a result, a number of interesting names have been left unprotected for the Rule 5 draft, which will take place Dec. 12 during the Winter Meetings in San Diego.
Per baseball’s rules, any player who was 19 or older on the June 5 immediately preceding the signing of his first contract is eligible for selection on the fourth Rule 5 draft following his first qualified season, as long as he is not on a team’s 40-man roster by that year’s deadline. Players who were 18 or younger when they signed wait until the fifth Rule 5 draft following their first qualified season.
The Mariners placed a number of Rule 5 eligible players, including Kyle Lewis, Justin Dunn and Art Warren, on the 40-man roster before calling them up late last season. Notable players left unprotected this year include Ljay Newsome, who posted a 3.54 ERA with 169 strikeouts and just 17 walks in 28 starts split mostly between High-A Modesto and Arkansas in 2019, outfielder Dom Thompson-Williams, who was acquired from the Yankees last year in the James Paxton trade, and reliever Jack Anderson.
The Mariners selected Brandon Brennan in the Rule 5 draft last year and are expected to make a selection in the Major League portion of the draft once again this year. Teams must pay $100,000 to select a player in the Rule 5 draft, and then that player either must (A) stay on the active roster for the entire season, or (B) get offered back to his former team for $50,000. With a 26-man active roster in the MLB expected in 2020, it will be interesting to see if more teams partake in the Rule 5 draft and if we see more position players selected.
With no moves made at the deadline, Seattle’s 40-man roster remains at 35. Up next on the baseball calendar is the tender deadline, which falls on Dec. 2.