Now that we know which prospects the Pittsburgh Pirates did not protect from the Rule 5 Draft, which are they most likely to lose in the draft?
Tuesday evening was the deadline for MLB organizations to add prospects to their 40-man rosters in order to protect them from next month’s Rule 5 Draft. Prior to the 6:0 PM EST deadline, the Pittsburgh Pirates decided to add four prospects to the 40-man roster.
Catcher Endy Rodriguez, relief pitcher Colin Selby, starting pitcher Mike Burrows, and infielder/outfielder Jared Triolo were the four prospects the Pittsburgh Pirates decided to protect.
Now that we know which prospects the Pittsburgh Pirates have decided to leave exposed in the Rule 5 Draft, who are they most likely to lose? While there might be multiple prospects that come to mind, such as reliever Tahnaj Thomas, there are three that they appear to be in the most danger of losing.
Catcher/Outfielder Blake Sabol
Blake Sabol is the prospect the Pirates are most likely to lose in the Rule 5 Draft. Sabol can play catcher and the outfield, and put together a strong minor league season in 2022. A season that saw him climb to the Triple-A level.
Sabol, who will be 25-years-old on Opening Day, hit for a .281/.347/.486 slash line to go with a 124 wRC+ and a .206 isolated slugging (ISO) in 412 plate appearances at Double-A Altoona. With Triple-A Indianapolis, Sabol then hit for a .296/.46/.543 slash line with a 158 wRC+ and .247 ISO in 101 PAs. Between the two levels, he drew walks at a 10.7% rate while striking out at a 25.1% clip.
Following his minor league season success, Sabol went on to play in the Arizona Fall League. In the AFL, Sabol hit for a .234/.346/.340 slash line with a home run, two doubles, seven walks, and 15 strikeouts in 55 PAs.
With Sabol having a 100+ PA sample size of great success at the Triple-A level, combined with his left-handed power bat he will be very intriguing in the Rule 5 Draft. Throw in his ability to catch as well as playing elsewhere in the field, and the Pittsburgh Pirates will likely be sweating things out with Sabol.