The annual MLB Rule 5 Draft began today just after noon Eastern, and gave teams a chance to pluck minor league players from one another’s farm systems provided they weren’t protected on that club’s 40 man roster.
The Braves came up 25th in the draft and decided to pass on their pick in the MLB phase of the draft despite having a pair of open spots on the 40 man roster. While the draft had plenty of action overall, there were also plenty of teams who passed just like the Braves did- a normal occurrence in a Rule 5 Draft.
Beyond the Braves decision to pass on their pick, other teams passed on adding anyone from the Braves organization in the MLB phase of the Rule 5 Draft. This means that the likes of Thomas Burrows are still in the Braves organization.
In the minor league phase, a phase where the player does not need to be rostered on the 40 man or put onto the MLB roster, the Braves took AJ Puckett, a right handed pitcher from the White Sox Double A roster.
Puckett is an interesting player, taken in the 2nd round of the 2016 MLB Draft by the Royals from Pepperdine and traded to the White Sox for Melky Cabrera. He has not pitched since 2017 due to injury, Tommy John surgery, and then the corona virus. There will be more to come on him separately.
In the second round the Braves took Jalen Miller, a second baseman off the San Francisco Giants Double A roster. Miller was a third round pick out of Riverwood HS in Sandy Spring, Georgia back in 2015. Miller had always been toolsy, but to date never really put his whole skill set together in pro ball in part due to his hit tool being questionable. More to come on him.
In the third round of the minor league phase the Braves took Jacob Pearson, an outfielder from the Twins organization. Pearson was taken out of a Louisiana high school in the third round of the 2017 MLB Draft by the Angels and then sent to the Twins in a deal to create IFA money for Shohei Ohtani. Pearson was regarded as a promising hitter out of high school, but struggled in the pros thus far. There will be more on him to come.
The Braves didn’t lose anyone in the minor league phase of the draft either.