The 2022 Major League Baseball rule 5 draft is set for December 7th and the deadline for protecting players from it has passed and Chicago Cubs may be active during the draft. For some that may not know, the rule 5 draft is when a team whose 40-man roster is not yet filled can pick unprotected prospects from other teams.
A prospect signed at 18 years old or younger becomes eligible for this draft if he is not added to the 40-man roster within five years. If the prospect was signed at 19 years old or older, he must be added to the 40-man within four years. An important rule to keep in mind for the rule 5 draft is if a prospect is selected he must be added to the team's 26-man roster immediately. Meaning if a club decides to draft someone, he must be added to the big league roster. In order to draft the player, teams must pay the player's original team $100,000. You can find a description of the rest of the rules and some history on the draft here.
Since the prospect has to be added to the big league roster immediately, a lot of thought goes into the draft. Some teams may decide not to draft anyone for this reason. However, there have been some decent players picked in the rule 5 draft in recent years. In the 2020 rule 5 draft, Garett Whitlock (RP, Boston Red Sox), Akil Baddoo (OF, Detroit Tigers), Zach Pop (RP, Toronto Blue Jays), and Tyler Wells (SP, Baltimore Orioles) were all drafted.
3 potential prospects for the Rule 5 draft.
The Cubs do not yet have a full roster and they could use the bench depth and platoon players, so it is not crazy to think they could find it in the rule 5 draft. These players are going to get the major league minimum in salary, and if they do not work out, the Cubs can easily move on from them by placing them on outright waivers.
Here are 3 potential prospects the Cubs should keep their eye on in the upcoming rule 5 draft.