Once again, it’s almost time for the Rule 5 Draft in which the Angels have the tenth pick this year. In order to draft someone they must have an open spot on the 40 man roster. As of the time of this writing, it appears that there are two open spots on the 40 man roster. That could change overnight, of course. Obviously, everyone wants those two spots to be filled by top of the line pitchers. Just suppose the Angels get those top of the line pitchers but then have almost no money left. How can they get budget help at other positions of need? This article explores possibilities taken from the list by Jonathan Mayo on MLB.com of those players each team has left exposed to the Rule 5 Draft that are in that team’s top 30 prospects.
First to the Angels:
The only player in the Angels organization who is eligible and considered a top 30 guy is shortstop Leonardo Rivas. Other names mentioned by the Halos Heaven community in my article about protecting Rule 5 eligible players included Luis Pena, Joe Gatto, Oliver Ortega, and Jose Rojas. The general consensus seemed to be that it is unlikely any of these guys will stick on a 26 man roster in 2020. A quick look at the stats:
SS Leonardo Rivas (Advanced A) Career .252/.380/.362 generally good fielding percentage in 2019
P Luis Pena (AA) Career ERA 4.50 Career WHIP 1.36
P Joe Gatto (AA) Career ERA 4.80 Career WHIP 1.58
P Oliver Ortega (AA) Career ERA 3.83 Career WHIP 1.27 (not bad I must admit)
3B Jose Rojas (AAA) Career .292/.350/.502 and his fielding percentage at 3B was iffy in 2019 (.906)
Jose Rojas also pitched one inning in 2019 with a WHIP of 2.00. (Don’t quit your day job, Jose.)
Who do the Angels need?
The consensus here regarding the needs of the Angels’ seems to be Pitching, Pitching, Pitching, Catching and possibly a fourth outfielder or somebody who can spell Albert Pujols at first base. Dylan Bundy crosses one “Pitching” off the list. I seriously doubt whether any Halos Heaven reader would rather have a Rule 5 pick pitching in 2020 than two players selected from the group comprising Bumgarner, Ryu, Price, and Keuchel. I will operate under the assumption that the Angels are playing at the big boys table when it comes to pitching this year. (I know they failed to reel in Gerrit Cole, Wheeler, or Strasburg. Oops! You can’t win ‘em all.)
Are any respectable catchers available?
C Patrick Mazeika (AA Binghampton Rumble Ponies) Mets system, Career .278/.371/.424 with a career fielding percentage at catcher of .992 and a career fielding percentage at first base of .993 (pretty large sample size)
C Rafael Marchan (Advanced A) Phillies system, Career .285/.342/.345 with a career fielding percentage of .986 at catcher and 1.000 at first base (small sample size)
C Rodolfo Duran (Advanced A) Phillies system, Career .251/.290/.408 with a career fielding percentage of .992
C Ricardo Genoves (A) Giants system, Career .255/.334/.369 with a career fielding percentage of .984 at catcher and .977 at first base (86.2 IN)
Are any respectable outfielders available?
INF/OF Trent Giambrone (AAA) Cubs system, (From Metairie, LA. Isn’t that where Johnny G. came from?) Career .250/.325/.416 with a career fielding percentage of .965 in the outfield and .969 at first base (211.2 IN). He’s played many innings at 2B, 3B and SS with fielding percentage descending in that order.
OF Andy Sugilio (Advanced A) Reds system, Career .286/.332/.376 with a career fielding percentage of .969 in the outfield and 1.000 at first base (8 IN). (He really sucks at third base.)
OF TJ Friedl (AA) Reds system, Career .277/.369/.412 with a career fielding percentage of .981
OF Michael Beltre (AA) Reds system, Career .258/.358/.362 with a career fielding percentage of .964
OF Mariel Bautista (A) Reds system, Career .288/.355/.417 with a career fielding percentage of .946
OF Daniel Montano (A) Rockies system Career .240/.311/.390 with a career fielding percentage of .979
OF Jake Robson (For some reason, milb.com claims never to have heard of this guy). Tigers system
OF Ronnie Dawson (AAA) Astros system, Career .245/.340/.411 with a career fielding percentage of .984
OF Seuly Matias (Advanced A) Royals system, Career .218/.299/.449 with a career fielding percentage of .957
OF Desmond Lindsay (Advanced A) Mets system, Career .238/.343/.367 with a career fielding percentage of .973
OF Jhailyn Ortiz (Advanced A) Phillies system, Career .227/.307/.411 with a career fielding percentage of .961
OF Cornelius Randolph (AA) Phillies system, Career .255/.343/.376 with a career fielding percentage of .984
OF Lolo Sanchez (Advanced A) Pirates system, Career .254/.342/.353 with a career fielding percentage of .987
OF Buddy Reed (AA Amarillo Sod Poodles) Padres system, Career .249/.311/.399 with a career fielding percentage of .981
OF Sandro Fabian (Advanced A) Giants system, Career .261/.311/.393 with a career fielding percentage of .970
OF Franklin Labour (A) Giants system, Career .275/.366/.441 with a career fielding percentage of .968
OF Dom Thompson-Williams (AA) Mariners system, Career .257/.332/.419 with a career fielding percentage of .982
OF Conner Capel (AA) Cardinals system, Career .247/.314/.403 with a career fielding percentage of .975
OF Moises Gomez (Advanced A) Rays system, Career .259/.320/.437 with a career fielding percentage of .970
OF/SS Eli White (AAA) Rangers system, Career .277/.355/.413 with a career OF fielding percentage of .971 (and .945 at shortstop)
OF Telmito Agustin (Advanced A) Nationals system, Career .269/.327/.411 with a career fielding percentage of .956
Patrick Mazieka and Trent Giambrone are the only guys in all this list that are doing anything for me. Michael Hermosillo sports a minor league career .264/.361/.407 with a .973 fielding percentage. Why do we need one of these other outfielders when we already know Hermosillo can hold his own in the big leagues? Patrick Mazieka, on the other hand, may well be able to out-bat Max Stassi (who had a Career MiLB line of .247/.320/.422). Mazieka bats left handed and throws right handed. I was unable to find a scouting report that might shed light on pitch framing or catch and throw abilities.
Do you see anybody you like? tell us about it in the comments.