The Mariners and Rainiers lost left-handed reliever Brian Moran today, as he was drafted away from the organization. Moran spent the 2012 and 2013 seasons with Tacoma, and he represented the Rainiers in the Triple-A All-Star Game in July.
Moran could return to the Rainiers next year – this gets kind of confusing, but let me explain…
This morning at the Winter Meetings, the Toronto Blue Jays drafted Moran with the fifth pick in the Rule 5 Draft. The Jays then traded Moran to the Los Angeles Angels (in exchange for about $250,00 in additional international free agent spending cap room – not actual money, but the ability to spend money on Latin American teenagers).
The Angels added Moran to their 40-man major league roster, and he will go to spring training with them. But here’s the kicker on the Rule 5 Draft: Moran must make the Angels opening day roster, and stay in the major leagues (on the 25-man roster) all season long. They can put him on the disabled list if he’s injured, otherwise he must stay in the majors, on the active roster, for the entire 2014 season.
If Moran pitches poorly and the Angels decide they can no longer keep him in the majors, they have to put him on waivers. Any of the 28 other teams (all but Seattle) can claim him off waivers, but the claiming team must continue to follow the rules and keep him in the major leagues. If no team is willing to do that, Moran clears waivers and is offered back to the Mariners – and the Mariners would have the freedom to send him to Tacoma.
This is a huge opportunity for Brian. It’s the major league shot that the Mariners have not yet given him, and this will be the most important season of his career so far. We wish him the best – hopefully he’ll stick in the big leagues. But hey, if he doesn’t – we’ll take him back!
- Here is the Angels report on acquiring Brian Moran, which includes a scouting description from General Manager Jerry Dipoto.
- The Mariners did not draft anybody in the major or minor league phases of the Rule 5 Draft. Here is the complete draft list – ex-Rainiers infielder Vinnie Catricala was one of the player selected in the minor league phase, he’s now with the Brewers organization.
- The Rangers made waves in the minor league section of the Rule 5 Draft by selecting Rockies “second baseman” Russell Wilson. Yup, the Seahawks Russell Wilson. This story explains why, and over at Sports Illustrated Jay Jaffe had some fun with it.
- The Mariners announced a press conference for 3:00 today in which they will officially introduce new second baseman Robinson Cano.
- Seattle Times columnist Jerry Brewer tried to find the meaning of the Cano signing.
- Ryan Divish has a story on the Mariners pending acquisitions of Corey Hart and Logan Morrison. Keith Law shares his opinions on those deals (ESPN Insider). Jeff Sullivan wrote about them, too, and it’s free.
- In the TNT, Bob Dutton has a winter meetings day three notebook.
- Former Mariners and Rainiers slugger Mike Morse signed a one-year deal with San Francisco. He was a free agent.
Starting to hear some strong rumors on the identity of the next Rainiers manager – we should have this news officially quite soon.