1997 Expansion Draft, were as follows:So, who did we protect? Who did we not protect?
A) Players who were drafted in the last two amateur drafts (2010 and 2011) were not eligible to be selected in the Expansion draft. Also, players selected in the 2009 amateur draft who were under the age of 19 at the time they were selected are also exempt. Teams do not have to protect these players. These same rules apply to amateur free agents who signed in the same timeframe. Therefore, neither expansion club could pick Mike Trout from the Angels.
B) Any player who is going to be a free agent, obviously, will not need to be protected in this draft, since they will not be on their team’s roster at the time of the draft. Therefore, the Mets do not have to burn a spot on Jose Reyes, unless they happen to sign him to an extension before then.
C) Teams are required to submit a list of 15 eligible players who will be “protected” for the first round, meaning that neither expansion team can select them. The Marlins, for instance, protected Mike Stanton, recognizing that he was an incredible young talent with a low salary that any expansion team would pounce on.
D) The expansion teams are only allowed to select one player from any organization per round. For instance, if one club selected Adrian Beltre from the Texas Rangers, the Rangers couldn’t lose anyone else for the rest of that round.
E) After each expansion team has picked 15 players (which would mean that every MLB club has had one players selected), each club is allowed to protect three additional players for Round 2. At that point, the process repeats itself, with 15 more picks, and three more protected players, for Round 3. This continues until each expansion team has selected 35 players.
First 15 . . .
C Matt Wieters - Is currently one of the best catchers in baseball. Really. He is.
RF Nick Markakis - He has to be better than this and he is signed to a reasonable contract.
CF Adam Jones - Reasonable salary and near All Star performance.
SP Jeremy Guthrie - Veteran pitcher, quality pitcher, cheap pitcher.
SP Brian Matusz - Lots of promise even with his recent setbacks.
SP Chris Tillman - This might surprise people, but Tillman has youth and ability. He is still mighty young.
SP Jake Arrieta - Young, solid thrower...as you can tell, we are hoarding our pitching.
SP Zach Britton - Same thing.
SP Brad Bergesen - This might also surprise people, but he could be a cheap valuable back end starter.
SS J.J. Hardy - One of the better players on the team and a valuable trade piece.
OF Felix Pie - This list was made about eight weeks ago, I would now leave Pie off of it.
LF Luke Scott - Reasonable contract and potential value on the market.
OF Xavier Avery - Raw, toolsy outfielder. Even with continued poor performance, I would still protect him.
UTL LJ Hoes - He has also had a rough season, but the O's system does not have many have to protect guys.
SP Bobby Bundy - We have always been high on him here at the Depot and think he can be a solid mid rotation starter.
Who did we leave available?
We left many of our high priced relievers and older veterans for the taking. We have long thought poorly of the Roberts extension and wished for some intervention. We also were not very high on Vlad and the multiple millions spent on fringe relievers.
Who was taken in the first round?
3B Josh Bell - We are fine with this. Bell showed a lot of promise when he came over from the Dodgers organization. However, his improving defense stopped improving and he has largely lost his ability to take a walk. Without a glove, you need a big bat to succeed. He has that potential, but I severely doubt he can fulfill that potential.
We were then allowed to pull back three players:
LF Nolan Reimold - Part of us still believes there is an above average bat here. Reimold is getting older, but that ability is still there for him to emerge as a late bloomer.
1B Brandon Snyder - He has a good swing and not much else. However, that might be enough.
1B Tyler Townsend - He has ability and there just is not much for us to protect on this squad.
Who was taken in the second round?
3B Mark Reynolds - We are also fine with this. The way we see things is that Reynolds is being paid as a 2 win player. When everything is working, he is exactly that. Past attempts to have him play first base were dreadful and we are not sure how well he can play left field. This might have been a poor decision on our part to pull back Snyder and not Reynolds, but we also enjoy the increased payroll flexibility. Unfortunately, say hello to new third baseman Robert Andino!
We were then allowed to pull three more back:
C Caleb Joseph - Potentially a useful backup offensive oriented catcher.
SP Ryan Berry - I think this was before we knew the extent of his injuries, but he is a fine pitching prospect.
RP Koji Uehara - Reasonably priced, solid reliever who may be useful in trade.
No one else was selected from the organization.
We were pretty happy with how we came out in the end. We really did not lose much and we really did not have much to lose. Sadly, we really we not able to get rid of any of the sillier contracts we have on the books, but we knew coming in that these guys kind of knew what they were doing (outside of not taking James Shields--what?). Anyway, anyone have any better suggestions how we should have gone about it?