The deadline to Rule 5 eligible players to the 40-man MLB rosters came and went on Friday afternoon. For the Milwaukee Brewers, things ended up remaining relatively quiet on the transaction wire.
There was one subtraction from the roster for the Crew, as utility man Mark Mathias was outrighted to the minors earlier in the day. That left Milwaukee with five roster spots to work with if they wanted to protect any of their Rule 5 eligible minor leaguers.
There were four members of MLB Pipeline’s Top 30 Brewers prospects which the team could have decided to add to their 40-man roster. There were also a handful of other minor leaguers that Milwaukee could have protected.
In the end, the Brewers opted not to add any prospects to their 40-man roster ahead of the Rule 5 deadline.
One of the biggest factors to take into consideration when deciding to add a Rule 5 eligible player to the 40-man roster is their immediate MLB readiness. Any team that selects a player in the Rule 5 draft is required to carry that player on their 26-man active roster the following season.
When you look at the actual Brewers prospects that will now end up being eligible for the Rule 5 draft this winter, it isn’t terribly surprising that no one was added to the roster. That even goes for the prospects that show up on the Top 30 list.
The only one on the list that even had a remote chance of being added was outfielder Korry Howell, the team’s No. 15 prospect. But he, nor the other three players mentioned in our article yesterday, are really old enough or advanced enough to join an MLB roster.
Outside of the Top 30 prospects list, there were a couple players who could have been interesting possible adds for the Brewers. Jamie Westbrook had a very solid year at Double-A and Triple-A, hitting a combined .281 with a .810 OPS, and could be considered MLB ready.
Reliever Luke Barker had his second straight season of being considered for Rule 5 protection after yet another solid year in the minors. He had a 2.35 ERA in his second year at Triple-A and had his name circulating last year in consideration for a late-season roster spot.
In the end, though, neither player, nor the aforementioned Top 30 members, were added to the roster on Friday. Instead, the Brewers will likely fill out their roster through free agent acquisitions or trades, like the recent one for utility man Mike Brosseau, this offseason.
Even though it has been rare for Milwaukee to not add at least one or two Rule 5 eligible players to the roster this time of year, their lack of activity today shouldn’t have caught anyone by surprise.