MLB will hold its annual Rule 5 Draft today from 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. ET. Normally, we'd be looking for somebody that could help the Rays long term, but don't expect much this year. In fact, it looks like the Rays have more to lose(Eduardo Morlan) than they stand to gain.
It's unlikely the Rays make a selection and even more unlikely they keep somebody on the roster all season. The Rays also will not be picking at the top of the draft this year, which will limit their options even more. But nonetheless here are few names to keep an eye on tomorrow.
Don Veal LHP, Cubs
Veal is a popular name headed into the draft. He was the Cubs 2nd round pick in 2005 and was the number two prospect in the organization after 2006. Since then he's been unimpressive as a starter.
The Good: In 2008 he held LHB to a .221 average with an 8.63 K/9. He also didn't allow a HR to a lefty all season. He has a plus fastball and a nice curve.
The Bad: He's posted back to back 10 loss, 4.8 + tRA* seasons in Double-A, but as a LOOGY he is could be an option. He's not likely to be available when the Rays are on the clock.
Ryan Mullins LHP, Twins
Mullins was the Twins 3rd rd pick in 2005 out of David Price's alma mater, Vanderbilt. He's had decent success as a starter in the Twins system and reached Triple-A in 2007. He spent all of 2008 in Double-A and had another average to below season. He has good size; 6-6, 180, but not overpowering stuff. His fastball is 89-91, but he mixes in a slider and a change up. Like Veal, he may not be that good of a starter, but alas he is a candidate for a LOOGY role.
The Good: He carried a .204 avg against vs LHB in 2008. He also does a pretty good job of keeping the ball on the ground with a 52% GB rate against lefties.
The Bad: Had a 5.42 tRA* in his repeat year of Double-A. Also his FIP of 4.72 isn't pretty. K/BB rate is less than desirable.
Brad Kilby LHP, Athletics
Kilby could be some what of a hidden gem in this years draft. He was selected in the 29th rd of the 2005 draft by the A's and has been a pretty effective reliever in their system. He doesn't have a great arm as he tops out around 90, but he has been effective at getting K's.
The Good: He spent all of 2008 with Oakland's Triple-A affiliate in Sacramento where he had a K/9 of 8.49. This includes an impressive SwStr% of 11.9. In 2007, he struck out 69 batters in 65.2 innings at AA. Kilby definitely fits the LOOGY role the Rays are looking to fill. In 2008 his BAA vs left handed batters was .183. He has a deceptive delivery and has been durable thus far. A lefty handed reliever who gets K's, is effective vs. lefties and cheap.
The Bad: He is a mainly fly ball pitcher and his HR/9 was 1.16 last year, however, only one of his nine home runs given up was hit by a lefty. His FIP jumped from 3.38 in Double-A to 4.23 in Triple-A and his LOB% dropped from 80.2% to 69.7%