Kontos, 25, was the 11th player selected in today's Rule 5 Draft. He split the 2010 season between Single-A Tampa, Double-A Trenton and Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre in the Yankees organization, combining to go 0-4 with a 3.60 ERA (18 ER/45.0 IP) in 24 appearances (two starts). The 2010 campaign marked his first serving primarily as a reliever, having made two previous relief appearances. Originally signed by the Yankees as a fifth-round selection in the 2006 First-Year Player Draft, Kontos has gone 21-29 with a 3.47 ERA (202 ER/440.1 IP) in 97 games (73 starts) over parts of five minor league seasons. He has recorded 436 strikeouts compared to 151 walks, posting a 2.89 strikeout/walk ratio and averaging 8.9 strikeouts/9.0 IP.
In the Major League phase of the Rule 5 Draft, players left unprotected may be selected for $50,000. The selection rules provide that the player must remain on the drafting team's 25-man Major League roster during the following season or be offered back to the original club for $25,000. The Padres 40-man roster is now at 36.
Blackwood, 25, spent the 2010 season with the Independent Northern League's Kansas City T-Bones, where he hit .331 (141-for-426) with 27 doubles, five triples, 31 home runs, 86 RBI and 82 runs scored in 99 games. He led the league in both home runs and RBI and was named MVP following the season. Prior to the 2010 campaign, Blackwood hit .250 (351-for-1406) with 72 doubles, six triples, 22 home runs, 187 RBI and 153 runs scored in 373 games over parts of four minor league seasons in the Florida Marlins organization. He was originally signed as a 16th-round selection by the Marlins in the 2006 First-Year Player Draft.