A quick primer on the Rule 5 draft is in order. This allows teams to select players from other franchises, who has played for four years (or five if signed when they were 18) are not on the 40-man roster, for $50,000. This sounds like a great deal, right? Yeah, but there’s a poison pill. The player you select MUST remain on the selecting team’s 25-man roster for the entire season, save for DL stints. If that doesn’t happen, when taken off the roster, they must be offered back to the original team for half-price. [There are also minor-league sections, which no-one deeply cares about]
This does still offer a way for teams to pick up on players, though the vast majority don’t amount to anything, and don’t stick with their new team. There are occasional exceptions. Dan Uggla was picked by the Marlins from the D-backs, and became an All-Star. For Arizona, we made great use of the DL for catcher Oscar Hernandez, and thereby managed to keep him around for the whole year. That didn’t end up becoming much though. Anyway, it offers the chance for the D-backs both to gain and lose players. Which is something that hasn’t exactly happened over the course of the meetings to date. So we’ll keep an eye as things unfold in Las Vegas.