Cardinals Rule 5 Draft History: 2002-2011

The St. Louis Cardinals have been active in recent Rule 5 Drafts both acquiring or losing players. We recap their activity in both the major and minor league phases over the last decade.

With this month's Rule 5 Draft behind us, it seems an appropriate time to look back at St. Louis Cardinals activity in the annual early-December event over the last decade.

Protection decisions

In preparation for the draft, the club always makes additions to their 40-man roster to protect players from being eligible for selection by another organization. The following table indicates that activity in recent years.

Of course, this does not include every player the added over the course of the previous 12 months. Instead, these are the ones named to the 40-man from the conclusion of the regular season up until the date when protected lists were due in preparation for the Rule 5 Draft.

40 man adds
2011 2010 2009
Sam Freeman Tony Cruz Tyler Norrick
Chuckie Fick Blake King Adam Ottavino
Adam Ottavino David Kopp Francisco Samuel
Adron Chambers Bryan Anderson
Pete Kozma Allen Craig
Eduardo Sanchez Mark Hamilton
Adam Reifer Jon Jay
Daryl Jones
2008 2007 2006
Matt Scherer Kyle McClellan Troy Cate
Tyler Greene Jason Motte Dennis Dove
Joe Mather Blake Hawksworth
Mike Parisi Cody Haerther
Jarrett Hoffpauir Andy Cavazos
Mark Worrell
2005 2004 2003
Travis Hanson Scott Seabol Jason Ryan
Brendan Ryan Reid Gorecki Rhett Parrott
Rick Ankiel John Gall
Chris Narveson

Chuckie Fick
Heading into the 2011 Rule 5 Draft, the Cardinals added just three players to their 40-man. This is a major change compared to the last two years, during which time the Cardinals put a total of 15 players on the roster.

The downturn in new protected players this year may be in part due to the fact that nine of those 15 earlier players are still on the 40-man. Further, four of last winter's additions made their major league debuts in 2011 – Tony Cruz, Adron Chambers, Pete Kozma and Eduardo Sanchez.

However, it works the other way, too. In a reminder that rosters are always fluid, it is also worth noting that six of the players added in the two previous years have since been removed. One has even been added back, Adam Ottavino, while three others are no longer in the organization – Blake King, Tyler Norrick and Daryl Jones.

Erik Komatsu
Player movement – Major League phase

As either a buyer or seller, St. Louis was involved in the Major League phase of the Rule 5 Draft in nine of the last ten years. They did not always select players; in fact, they have established a perfect pattern of taking one every other year. Five Cardinals were also taken by other organizations in this phase of the draft during the last decade.

The table below shows the players the Cardinals selected and lost in the Major League phase. Also designated is whether the player was kept by St. Louis or returned to his original organization.

Since we don't know yet the future of this year's selection in the Major League phase, outfielder Erik Komatsu, let's look at the past few years instead. (You can read about Komatsu click here.)

One year ago, after pitching decently in the Arizona Fall League and earlier with Springfield, right-hander Brian Broderick was taken by the Washington Nationals. He continued to throw well in spring training, making the team out of camp, but did not fare as well in the regular season. By Memorial Day, Broderick was back with the Cardinals, at which time he eventually settled into the Memphis rotation.

In the 2009 draft, pitcher Mike Parisi was taken by the Cubs. Like Broderick, he pitched in the AFL, but in this case, he was coming Tommy John surgery. After Parisi did not make Chicago's roster in the spring, he cleared waivers. The Cardinals would have taken him back, however because he had been outrighted previously, he had the right to declare free agency instead. Parisi did that, only to sign a minor league deal to remain with the Cubs.

Three winters ago, reliever Luis Perdomo was drafted by the Giants. The Cardinals had acquired him a few months prior from Cleveland in return for disappointing starter Anthony Reyes. Perdomo did not stick with the Giants. After they placed him on waivers, he was selected by San Diego – a required step prior to return. Perdomo remained in the majors the entire 2010 season, but was back in Triple-A in 2011.

2009 was the only Rule 5 Draft in the last decade during which the Cardinals both selected a player in the major league phase, pitcher Ben Jukich from Cincinnati, and lost one, Parisi. Jukich did not make the Cardinals out of spring training and was returned to the Reds' Triple-A club in 2010. He became a free agent and signed to pitch in Korea in 2011.

Majors selected From Return Majors lost To Return
2011 Erik Komatsu  Was TBD none
2010 none Brian Broderick  Was yes
2009 Ben Jukich  Cin yes Mike Parisi  ChC no
2008 none Luis Perdomo  SF no
2007 Brian Barton  Cle no none
2006 none none
2005 Juan Mateo  ChC yes none
2004 none Tyler Johnson  Oak yes
2003 Hector Luna  Cle no none
2002 none Blake Williams  Cin yes

Barret Browning
Player movement – Minor League phases

The next table indicates the Cardinals activity in the Minor League phases of the recent Rule 5 Drafts. While St. Louis has picked up 14 players over the last decade, none of the 11 minor leaguers taken from 2002 through 2009 are still with the organization.

To read about the two pitchers the Cards added this year, Barret Browning and Shooter Hunt, click here.

Last year's selection, left-handed pitcher Jean Mijares, has yet to throw a pitch for the Cardinals, missing the entire 2011 season due to injury. In fact, the 23-year-old has yet to graduate from rookie-level ball.

In 2009, the Cardinals took another lefty reliever, Matt Meyer, from the Indians. He lasted with Double-A Springfield until mid-June of the following season, at which point he was given his release. Meyer subsequently pitched in independent ball before the Angels signed him to a minor league deal for 2011.

The Cardinals had lost just five players in the minor league phase over the first nine years of the last decade, but three more joined them this year alone - catcher Charlie Cutler, infielder Domnit Bolivar and pitcher Javier Avendano.

The increased size of the loss can indicate one of two things. Either the Cardinals may not have protected the right players or the overall strength of their minor league system has improved to the point that they had too many desirable players to protect them all. There is no way to answer this definitively.

Minors selected From Minors lost To
2011 Barret Browning  LAA Charlie Cutler  Pit
Shooter Hunt  Min Domnit Bolivar  Mil
Javier Avendano  Tor
2010 Jean Mijares  Min none
2009 Matt Meyer  Cle none
2008 Russ Haltiwanger  KC Cody Haerther  Tor
2007 none none
2006 Omar Falcon  Pit none
Jose Contreras  Was
2005 Iker Franco  Atl Tim Hummel  CWS
Vince Harrison  Bos
2004 Matt Demarco  Fla Tony Granadillo  Bos
Jose Garcia  Tex Josh Teekel  Fla
Justin Knoff  Cin
2003 Rayner Laya  Mon Jesse Roman  SD
Jackson Paz  Min
2002 none none

Previous articles in this series:
"Cardinals 2011 Rule 5 Protection Lists by Level"
"Cardinals in the 2011 Rule 5 Draft: Part One"
"Cardinals in the 2011 Rule 5 Draft: Part Two"
"Interview: Cardinals Rule 5 Pick Barret Browning"
"Interview: Cardinals Rule 5 Pick Erik Komatsu"
"Interview: Cardinals Rule 5 Pick Shooter Hunt"

Brian Walton can be reached via email at Also catch his Cardinals commentary daily at The Cardinal Nation blog. Look for his weekly minor league column during the season at Follow Brian on Twitter.

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