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Nats add trio to 40-man roster, protect from Rule 5 draft

Nov 20, 2015, 12:00 PM EDT

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The Nationals selected the contract of three prospects Thursday evening, adding them to the club’s 40-man roster and protecting them from being taken away in next month’s Rule 5 draft.

None of the three players — infielder Chris Bostick, catcher Spencer Kieboom and left-hander Nick Lee — rank high on the Nationals’ top prospects list, but all had been in the organization long enough to require roster protection.

Bostick, one of two players the Nationals acquired from the Rangers last winter for left-hander Ross Detwiler, impressed in his first season with the organization. The 22-year-old infielder hit a combined .258 with 12 homers, 58 RBI and 31 stolen bases in 137 games split between Class A Potomac and Class AA Harrisburg.

The Nationals sent Bostick, who profiles as a middle infielder with some power, to the Arizona Fall League where he has hit .268 with four homers and six stolen bases in 20 games.

Kieboom, the club’s fifth-round pick in the 2012 draft, got a taste of big-league camp last spring, then hit .248 with two homers, 26 RBI and a .344 on-base percentage in 71 games at Potomac. The 24-year-old catcher has been a teammate of Bostick’s this fall with the Salt River Rafters and is hitting .238 with two homers and a .373 on-base percentage in 13 games.

Lee, an 18th-round pick in 2011, enjoyed a breakthrough season after converting from starter to reliever, posting a 3.12 ERA with 57 strikeouts in 52 combined innings between Potomac and Harrisburg. The 5-fo-ot-11 lefty also has spent the last month pitching in Arizona, where he has allowed three earned runs in 6 2/3 innings.

These additions leave the Nationals with 38 players on their current 40-man roster, giving the club some room to work as they prepare for the thick of the offseason. The Winter Meetings take place Dec. 7-10 in Nashville, Tenn., with the Rule 5 draft wrapping up the annual event.

Among the players the Nationals left unprotected were first baseman Matt Skole (the organization’s player of the year in 2012) and outfielder Caleb Ramsey (who hit .287 with a .354 on-base percentage at Harrisburg and Class AAA Syracuse this season).

  1. Doc - Nov 20, 2015 at 1:04 PM

    Skole never did get it back after his injury of 2 years ago.

  2. natsguy - Nov 20, 2015 at 1:49 PM

    He reached his level of incompetence. Over hyped.

  3. TimDz - Nov 20, 2015 at 3:09 PM

    When do the Nats need to add Giolito to the 40 man? Next year? or 2017?

    • Section 222 - Nov 20, 2015 at 3:48 PM

      My initial reaction to this question was that Giolito would certainly be brought up long before he would be Rule 5 eligible. But here’s the rule:

      “Players are eligible for selection in the Rule 5 draft who are not on their major league organization’s 40-man roster and:

      – were 18 or younger on the June 5 preceding their signing and this is the fifth Rule 5 draft upcoming; or

      – were 19 or older on the June 5 preceding their signing and this is fourth Rule 5 draft upcoming.”

      Giolito was born in July 1994. He was 17 on June 5 before he signed in 2012. So he will be eligible for the Rule 5 draft in December 2016 if he isn’t put on the 40-man roster before then.

      That year off for TJ recovery makes a difference.

      • kirbs3256 - Nov 21, 2015 at 9:48 AM

        For the record, it be 2017 since he was signed in 12 and it’s 5 years.

      • Section 222 - Nov 22, 2015 at 11:22 PM

        I don’t think so. He was signed in the summer of ’12. The Rule 5 draft in December ’12 was the first; The Rule 5 draft in Dec. ’16 will be the 5th.

  4. langleyclub - Nov 20, 2015 at 5:05 PM

    Kind of surprised that they moved Kieboom to the 40 man. He was a middling player in Class A, and is not known to be particularly toolsy. Would be shocked if another MLB team would be willing to take him in the Rule 5 and keep him on a MLB 25 man roster for all of 2016. Even so, they have two open spots on their roster, and they can always DFA Kieboom if they need to open up another spot.

    Bostick has speed and power and can play multiple positions. Looks like another crafty acquisition by the front office for Detwiler, who the Rangers let go midway through 2015.

    • virginiascopist - Nov 20, 2015 at 5:30 PM

      I’m a little surprised as well, but I guess they were afraid of a repeat of Adrian Nieto. Whatever happened to him? I mean, the White Sox obviously kept him on their roster that year, but it looks like he’s been in AA since.

  5. lesatcsc - Nov 20, 2015 at 6:27 PM

    So when does Mike begin to make some serious moves? Not hearing much about the Nats in terms of players.

  6. mauimo22 - Nov 20, 2015 at 8:07 PM

    They better protect Caleb Ramsey – he’s got mad skillz!

  7. - Nov 20, 2015 at 10:44 PM

    The Tigers have traded Ian Krol to Atlanta as part of the package for Cameron Maybin. We can close the books on the Doug Fister deal, as Detroit has gotten rid of all three former Nats.

    In his two years in Washington, Fister had a collective WAR of +4.5, according to Baseball Reference.

    In their time with Detroit, Robbie Ray’s WAR was -0.8, Krol’s was -1.1 and Lombo never played a game for the Tigers.

    Mr. Rizzo, that’s a pretty freaking dandy trade.

  8. Drew - Nov 20, 2015 at 10:52 PM

    The Tigers have traded Ian Krol to the Braves as part of the Cameron Maybin deal. We can now close the books on the Nats’ trade for Doug Fister, as the Tigers have parted with all three ex-Nats.

    In two years with the Nats, Fister had a combined WAR of 4.3, according to Baseball Reference.

    In their time with the Tigers, Krol’s WAR was -1.1, Robbie Ray’s was -0.8 and Lombo never played a game for Detroit.

    Dandy deal, Mr. Rizzo.





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