The deadline to protect prospects from the Rule 5 draft is 5 p.m. CT today, November 15.
In an effort to clear space on 40-man rosters, teams are beginning to make deals.
The Cubs have reportedly made one that will add a player to their 40-man:
Hearing #Rays have a deal in place to trade Mastrobuoni to #Cubs, return would be a Class A pitcher. If completed, that would open one of several 40-man roster spots they’ll need by 6 p.m.— Marc Topkin (@TBTimes_Rays) November 15, 2022
Miles Mastrobuoni is a multi-position player, primarily a second baseman, but he played shortstop, third base and all three outfield positions for Triple-A Durham in 2022, where he had a pretty good year at the plate: .300/.377/.469 (152-for-507) with 16 home runs and 23 stolen bases. He went 3-for-16 in eight games with the Rays late in 2022. He was Tampa Bay’s 14th round pick in 2016 out of Nevada-Reno.
Presuming this deal is completed — and I will update this post if and when it is, including the return — that leaves the Cubs’ 40-man roster at 35.
I would think this might spell the end of Zach McKinstry as a Cub, too, as Mastrobuoni has a similar skillset and also bats lefthanded. As always, we await developments.
UPDATE: Per press release from the Cubs, they are sending 22-year-old Alfredo Zárraga to the Rays in return. Zárraga posted a 1.93 ERA in 17 relief appearances between Low-A Myrtle Beach and High-A South Bend in 2022. He was signed by the Cubs as a non-drafted free agent in January 2021.
Miles Mastrobuoni for Alfredo Zárraga...
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