The Rule 5 draft is still months away, but let’s take a way too early preview of some 40-man roster decisions the Pittsburgh Pirates will have to face.
Because of the lockout in the 2021-2022 offseason, there was no major league phase Rule 5 Draft, the first time since it was established. The Pittsburgh Pirates protected some notable prospects, with Jack Suwinski, Travis Swaggerty, Diego Castillo, and Liover Peguero receiving 40-man roster spots. They also left unprotected other noteworthy prospects like Mason Martin, Cal Mitchell, and Cody Bolton.
Luckily, the Pittsburgh Pirates were able to sneak out with no noteworthy prospects taken away because of the draft’s cancellation (they did lose right-hander Steven Jennings to the New York Yankees in the minor league phase of the Rule 5 draft). However, the 2022-2023 MLB Rule 5 draft is scheduled to take place at the Winter Meetings once again without interruption.
That’s still a long way away, approximately four months out. But the Pirate 40-man roster can start taking shape now in preparation for the Rule 5 Draft. So let’s take a way too early look at some potential players who could be protected, left off, or released/DFA’d from the roster to make room for new players.