Red Sox add to 40 man roster at Rule 5 deadline
Today was the deadline for major league teams to protect their prospects from selection in the Rule 5 draft, by adding them to their 40 man roster. As WEEI.com predicted last night perfectly, four players were protected and thus eligible to be used by the team for this upcoming season.
1. Blake Swihart (.293/.341/.469, 13 homers) may be the most prized prospect of the bunch. Though not at the Christian Vazquez level defensively, Swihart is a solid defensive backstop. 2014 was Swihart’s first year at AAA, so the team will want him to get more seasoning before he sees big league time.
2. Eduardo Rodgriguez came over from the Orioles in the Andrew Miller deal and did nothing but impress while at AA Portland, posting a 0.96 ERA in 37.1 innings over six starts. Perhaps something clicked in for him as he had fairly ordinary numbers earlier in the season for the Orioles (4.79 ERA over 16 starts, 82.2 innings, and a 3.41 ERA over 140 innings in 2013). As a left-handed starter who can dial up his velocity to the 95 range when needed, the addition to the 40 man was expected.
3. Sean Coyle (.295/.371/.512) just finished his season a week ago in the Arizona Fall League. For the most part he struggled (.209/.303/.343, 1 homer) for the Surprise Saguaros, but the team must have seen enough to reward the 16 homers he pounded, and 13 bases he stole this year in AA.
4. Travis Shaw (.278/353/.473) rounds out the group. Shaw’s 21 home runs this past season made the decision to add him to the 40 man roster a fairly easy one. Though his stats were better at AA than AAA, Shaw does two things the Red Sox need right now. First, Shaw slashed .304/.384/.542 vs. righties this season. Second, Shaw has also played some third base in his professional career, which could bring him to the majors sometime in 2015.
Stay tuned to BoSoxInjection.com for coverage of all the Red Sox offseason moves while we wait for the free agent dominos to fall.