The San Francisco Giants will need to find room on the 40-man roster for several prospects who are set to become Rule 5 Draft eligible this offseason.
Each offseason, teams need to add prospects to the 40-man roster in order to protect them from being scooped up by other teams in the annual Rule 5 draft. The San Francisco Giants are no exception.
So who is eligible to be selected?
According to MLB.com: "Players who signed with their current club at age 18 or younger and have played professionally for at least five years are eligible to be selected, as are those who signed at 19 or older and have at least four years of professional experience."
Last offseason, the San Francisco Giants added three players to the 40-man roster in order to protect them from Rule 5 eligibility—starting pitcher Logan Webb and relief pitchers Sam Coonrod and Melvin Adon.
Webb showed some flashes during eight second-half starts, Coonrod posted a 3.58 ERA in 33 appearances, and Adon split the season between Double-A and Triple-A and racked up 77 strikeouts in 55.1 innings.
While there are no prospects as highly regarded as Webb set to be added to the 40-man this time around, there are still some prospects who rank among the team's top 30 that could be worth an add, which would, in turn, put them one step closer to making their MLB debut.
Ahead is a look at the notable prospects the San Francisco Giants will need to add to the 40-man or risk losing this winter. Included is where each player ranks among the team's top 30 prospects, according to Baseball America and MLB.com.
C Ricardo Genoves (BA: 26; MLB.com: 22)
Signed for $500,000 out of Venezuela in 2015.
Genoves will be entering his age-21 season and he has yet to play above the Single-A level, so it's unlikely anyone would select him in the Rule 5 draft. That said, after posting an .804 OPS with 21 extra-base hits in 51 games while throwing out 40 percent of base stealers, his stock is clearly on the rise.
OF Franklin Labour (BA: 20; MLB.com: 20)
Signed for $70,000 out of the Dominican Republic in 2015.
Labour didn't make his stateside debut until 2018, and he too has yet to play above Single-A. He hit .271/.350/.505 with 15 doubles and 15 home runs in 306 plate appearances in 2019, flashing the plus raw power that will be his carrying tool.
OF Diego Rincones (BA: 25; MLB.com: NR)
Signed for $175,000 out of Venezuela in 2015.
Rincones finally made his full-season debut in 2019, hitting .288/.351/.410 with 29 doubles, four triples, seven home runs and 65 RBI in 530 plate appearances. The 20-year-old will be worth keeping an eye on as he climbs the ranks, but without a standout tool, he's unlikely to be on other team's radar when the Rule 5 draft rolls around, so he could be left unprotected.
Others of Note: 2B Jalen Miller, IF Ryan Howard, OF Jacob Heyward, OF Heath Quinn
RHP Jose Marte (BA: 18; MLB.com: NR)
Signed for $50,000 out of the Dominican Republic in 2015.
Marte made his full-season debut in 2018, posting a 4.70 ERA with 112 strikeouts in 118.2 innings. He struggled with the move up to High-A, logging a 5.59 ERA while his walk rate climbed from 3.8 to 5.4 BB/9. He has a live arm and he did rack up 80 strikeouts in 74 innings, but at 23 years old he's fallen behind the developmental curve.
LHP Garrett Williams (BA: 21; MLB.com: 28)
Selected in the 7th round of the 2016 MLB draft.
Williams began the 2018 season as the No. 7 prospect in the San Francisco system, according to Baseball America, after posting a 2.32 ERA with 96 strikeouts in 97 innings between Single-A and High-A. However, the wheels fell off with the jump to Double-A, as he turned in a dreadful 6.06 ERA with 6.7 BB/9 in 81.2 innings. His second go-around at the level proved more fruitful, with a 3.60 ERA and 108 strikeouts in 110 innings, but his 5.0 BB/9 was still too high and a full-time move to the bullpen where his fastball-curveball pairing would play up could be forthcoming.
LHP Caleb Baragar (BA: NR; MLB.com: NR)
Selected in the 9th round of the 2016 MLB draft.
Baragar doesn't show up on any top prospect lists, but after posting a 3.57 ERA and 1.11 WHIP with 135 strikeouts in 141 innings over three levels while reaching Triple-A, he has emerged as an intriguing depth piece in the upper levels of the minors. He lacks elite stuff but has a good feel for pitching.
Others of Note: SP DJ Myers, RP Jesus Tona
The San Francisco Giants have a decision to make on all of these guys this offseason. Do they protect them by adding them to the 40-man roster, or expose them to the Rule 5 draft and risk losing them to another team?