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December 23, 2003 12:00 am

Can Of Corn: The Rule 5 Draft

0

Dayn Perry

Baseball's Rule 5 draft, in many ways, is confined to the rural route of the annual winter meetings, so it doesn't get as much bandwidth/column inches as it should. But as many teams are learning or already know that the Rule 5 is a nifty way to add a high-ceiling prospect to the system. The catch, as you know, is that any team selecting a player in Rule 5 must keep the lucky draftee on the active major league roster for the entire season or until he can fake an injury substantial enough to eventually land him on the 60-day DL. Just last year, we saw teams choose a handful of vaguely useful to flat-out good relievers (e.g., Aquilino Lopez of the Blue Jays and Javier Lopez of the Rockies). And reaching back into the antediluvian mists of prehistory, luminary Roberto Clemente first made his way to the Pirates via Rule 5. This winter's crop is the least impressive since I've been closely following this draft, but there were still some engaging names on the board. So, in my stateliest Lance Ito fashion, I shall now pass judgment on the 2003 class of Rule 5 draftees. All rise...

Baseball's Rule 5 draft, in many ways, is confined to the rural route of the annual winter meetings, so it doesn't get as much bandwidth/column inches as it should. But as many teams are learning or already know that the Rule 5 is a nifty way to add a high-ceiling prospect to the system.

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Optioned RHP Matt Wise to Edmonton; optioned RHPs Elvin Nina and Scot Shields and C Jason Dewey to Erie (Double-A); optioned OF Elpidio Guzman to Lake Elsinore (A); assigned RHP Steve Green and C Shawn Wooten to their minor-league camp. [3/14]

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Placed SS Gary DiSarcina, 2B Justin Baughman, and RHPs Jack McDowell and Pep Harris on the 15-day DL; placed RHP Mike James on the 60-day DL. [3/24]

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The full results of this year's IBA voting.

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