Rule 5: Another Thurman?

Friday, December 13 2002 @ 11:30 AM EST

Contributed by: Coach

Monday, we'll see if Scott Wiggins or any other Blue Jays get claimed in the annual Rule 5 draft.'s Jonathan Mayo explains the rule in detail, but here's the nitty-gritty:

"A player who is 18 when he's signed can spend four seasons in an organization before he has to be protected. Anyone who is 19 or older must be protected after three years. Once past that time of service, a prospect must be put on the 40-man roster if his organization wants to keep him from being eligible for the Rule 5 draft.

On a different page, Mayo speculates on some of the possibilities to change organizations, including Jays' lefty Matt Ford (2.37 ERA in Dunedin.) In the third part of an interesting feature, he rates the 10 best Rule 5 pickups since 1990, including two that got away from Toronto (Jay Gibbons & Graeme Lloyd.) In one year, J.P. and his organization had the highest-rated amateur draft in baseball and made Mayo's "best" list, headed by Fernando Vina, with their first Rule 5 heist, Corey Thurman.

Will there be an encore? Marshall McDougall can play anywhere in the infield, and had a .486 SLG and .374 OBP in 300+ AB with Oakland's AA farm team before being traded to the Indians, so you know J.P. has a book on him. There are many available pitching prospects, including the Yankees' Adrian Hernandez and Mariners' lefty Craig Anderson, and there's an open spot on the roster. Hard to predict who the Jays might take, but why not roll the dice again? In Ricciardi we trust.