rule 5 draftThe Cubs do not have a selection in the first round of this year’s Rule 5 Draft thanks to Lendy-Gate, but they could lose a player or two when it’s all said and done.

You can be a huge nerd like me and listen live to the Rule 5 Draft here, or you can be just a slight nerd and follow along with this post. I’ll update as Cub-relevant selections are made.

Away we go …

  • The Padres traded up to the first pick (we think), having the Astros select for them Patrick Schuster, a lefty from the Diamondbacks. The White Sox took a catcher from the Nationals with the second pick, and the Phillies took a pitcher from the Diamondbacks. Still in the clear.
  • Tommy Kahnle and Brian Moran go off the board, as they were expected to.
  • Then a bunch of passes.
  • Crap on a cracker: the Diamondbacks do it again to the Cubs, taking reliever Marcos Mateo. The 29-year-old reliever, who has spent a couple years getting over an arm injury, is dominating in the Dominican Republic right now. He has a very good chance of sticking with the Diamondbacks, and actually helping.
  • The Cubs got a pick in the second round and opted to pass. Absent a trade, they will not have a Rule 5’er this year, which feels like the first time in a while. With a rebuild underway, and a 40-man full of youngsters the Cubs need to keep, this outcome makes sense (including losing Mateo).
  • No Jae-Hoon Ha, Eric Jokisch, Matt Loosen, Marcus Hatley or anyone else selected from the Cubs. This was actually a pretty good outcome.

The minor league phase is now underway. Short explanation: these guys are gone for good, but the organization had many opportunities/slots to protect the players. You’re not going to get a future star in the minor league phase of the Rule 5 Draft.

  • The Marlins take Justin Bour, whom I didn’t realize the Cubs didn’t protect at the minor league level. He’s a big bat who had a down year, and is 1B/DH only.
  • The Cubs took Charles Cutler from the Pirates in the minor league phase. He’s a 27-year-old who has stalled out at AA (though always hitting well there), and is organizational depth. The Cubs are so thin at catcher that this makes sense, and he could see time at AAA this year. He might actually be the third or fourth option on the depth chart right now. Yikes.
  • The Orioles take Julio Borbon, whom I did not realize was still under Cubs control. I assumed he was a minor league free agent, given all of the waiver movement last year. He was off the radar. (Lot’s of “whom I did not realize” going on – that’s what makes it the minor league phase of the Rule 5 Draft.)
  • The Pirates took A.J. Morris, who came to the Cubs from the Nationals a few years ago. He’s 27 and had a very down year in 2013 at AA. It wasn’t going to happen with the Cubs for him.
  • And it’s over. No crushing losses for the Cubs, and a nice depth catcher. Good day.
  • BT

    mateo gone to arizona

  • BT

    and that’s it.

  • BT

    AAA portion still to come.

  • JeffR

    Cubs probably hoped teams would select more of their players. They can use the 50k.

    • http://bleachernation.com woody


  • Chad

    No Jae-Hoon Ha, Eric Jokisch, Matt Loosen, Marcus Hatley or anyone else selected from the Cubs. This was actually a pretty good outcome.

    An indication that these guys are not that good, or are not that close to ML ready as well.

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Luke

      I wouldn’t quite agree with that. There are lots of reasons to not take a player other than thinking he isn’t that good or that he isn’t close to the majors.

      • Chad

        I agree they aren’t the only reasons, but for a guy like Loosen. If you are the astros and really have little to gain, why not take a flier on him and stash him in the pen unless you don’t think you can do it. I’m fine with it, I don’t really grade the prospects value on this, but I was just being antagonistic a bit to “the good news” of them not getting selected. I am a cubs fan, I have to be a bit pessimistic right?

        • C. Steadman

          Astros selected a LH reliever in the Rule 5…im guessing they didnt want 2 guys locked in the bullpen for the year

  • Eric

    I’d like to see Ha get some MLB at-bats this year.

    • Kevin


  • Dumpgobbler

    I’m very surprised that Jae-Hoon Ha wasn’t selected by a team. Guy can play all three spots in the OF right away, and should hit enough to justify keeping him as a 4th OFer with potential to maybe start in CF.

    • Cedlandrum

      Ha is a very good outfielder, VERY Good. The hitting is an issue though. He was young for the level, but he looked entirely overwhelmed at Iowa last year and the PCL is not a pitching league. He can grow at the plate, but on a good minor league year he has been about a .280 hitter, I just don’t see his skills transitioning to the majors even as a bench guy, unless you are wanting Cole Gillisepe 2.0

  • Fishin Phil

    Could have been worse.

  • Spriggs

    They lose minor league filler and nothing more in Bour. Also surprised Ha was not taken.

    • Chad

      I’m not. He is projected as a 4th outfielder for the cubs! Who would want to stash him? There are probably numerous players of similar quality to him in each system.

      • http://www.bleachernation.com Luke

        Not as many as you’d think. Ha is very good with the glove. I’m fairly confident that not all systems have that good of a defensive outfielder in Triple A.

        • Spriggs

          Very much agree. He is extremely good with the glove, especially in CF. Might be the best in the entire Cubs organization besides Almora.

          • Cedlandrum

            Yes but he can’t hit.

            • Spriggs

              But he was one of those guys that changed his approach at the plate, and it wasn’t working. I believe he can and will hit better than what he showed last year.

              • Cedlandrum

                I hope so because he looked really bad here in Iowa. He didn’t look like he had a plan up there.

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Luke

      Bour is a great guy to have on a minor league team and is a lot of fun to watch, but his loss doesn’t harm the system much at all.

      If anything, losing Bour opens up some 1B at bats in Iowa for some guys, and the Cubs stand to have a lot of players needing at bats in Iowa before the end of the year.

      Marlins are getting a fan favorite, though. Smokies fans loved that guy.

      • cub2014

        ya it means Geiger starts at AA and Vogelbach
        at Daytona. They could both move up quickly
        during the season because Rohan is your AAA

        • Beer Baron

          or perhaps creates a place to stick Josh Vitters for one more year.

      • ssckelley

        I agree, first base was becoming a log jam in the minors and is not a difficult position to fill. I think the Cubs dodged a bullet with Loosen and I am glad to see them retain his rights and I look forward to seeing him at Iowa next season.

  • Nate Dawg

    Cubs really missed the boat on Russell Wilson.

  • Eric

    Off topic: are we about to pick up Justin Ruggiano from the fish?

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      I wouldn’t mind it. Great against lefties.

      • North Side Irish

        Carrie Muskat ‏@CarrieMuskat now
        #Cubs acquire OF Ruggiano from Marlins for Bogusevic

        And there it is…

      • Eric

        Yup, great platoon guy. I’m not sure what the upside is for the Marlins, other than a skooch of salary relief.

    • http://bleachernation.com woody

      might he be the mystery man in the low level trade offer. if he is then Theo truly is dumpster diving.

    • WGNstatic

      looks like it, for Bogusevich.

  • http://bleachernation.com woody

    Remember the Seinfeld episode where they were going to do a TV series and George says it will be a “show about nothing”. That’s how I feel about these winter meetings. This Tanaka thing has thrown a monkey wrench into pitching market. Gotta believe that once that is resolved they will fall like dominoes. Probably starting with Price.

  • Blake

    Did I hear that Russell Wilson (Seahawks QB) was drafted in the Rule 5 by the Rangers? or was that a joke?

  • C. Steadman

    thats no joke, Rangers picked him away from the Rockies…well maybe its the Rangers making a joke but it did happen

    • FarmerTanColin

      Should draw some fanfare if he reports to spring training. Great move by them its hilarious.

  • Jon

    So was Justin Ruggiano that “mystery outfielder” from the trade rumors yesterday?

  • C. Steadman

    Brett, no tidbit about Russell Wilson getting drafted? even though it was just a PR move by the Rangers? and I think it was in the Double A portion of the draft, correct?

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      Yes, he was. I mentioned it on Twitter. It’s just a funny thing.

    • ssckelley


  • Norm

    I wonder if Diamondbacks blog comments are something like:
    “this Mateo guy isn’t even good enough to get a spot on the CUBS roster and now we have to hang on to him all year??”

    • Spriggs

      Knowing a few of the them, it’s more likely the comments are closer to something like: “Yes! I hope we just f$%#@’d the @#$!’n Cubs again”.

  • Mak

    What a huge relief. Losing Mateo is not a bad thing. The point of the Rule V is to give players a chance where they are buried. Mateo was pretty buried so I’m happy he’s getting a chance. Not losing Hernandez, Amaya, Ha or loosen is a big win.

    • ssckelley

      From the looks of it Mateo should not have been buried. Here they are trying to acquire bullpen help and they let a team that is looking to contend grab one from under their noses.

      • C. Steadman

        yeah i’d like Mateo back…too bad

  • FarmerTanColin

    Mateo still recovering from Quade pitching him 5 innings to “save” his bullpen?

    Anyway I’m glad Ha and Hatley are still around and I’m glad we didn’t select anyone. I’ve been extrememly high on Ha ever since he was in A+ ball. I remember listening to the AA radio broadcasts and Mick would praise him as the legend of Hoon-Ha growing. Then he took Gerrit Cole deep in the futures game..love the guy.

    I see Denard Span with him, Ha with a little more power, Span little more speed. Ha put up a 9-11 BB% in AA 12-13. His BABIP was considerably lower during his time in Iowa last year. I see him as the 6th OF’r right now with a chance to win the 5th spot in Spring training. He’s right handed with excellent defense….career 15% SO rate in the minors.

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