40-MAN ROSTERS SET, RULE 5 DRAFT GOES DEC 6

Last night at midnight ET the deadline passed for clubs to set their 40-man rosters before the Rule 5 Draft, which takes place at the  Winter Meetings in Nashville on Dec. 6. After either 4 or 5 years as a professional, a player must be added to his club’s 40-man roster, (explanation in the 40-man roster link above) or the club risks losing him in the Rule 5 Draft.

The rosters didn’t have to be set at exactly 40 players last night, just no more than 40. The Astros’ 40-man roster currently sits at 36 players, leaving room to add free agents or Rule 5 signings later.

With the deadline came some surprises from around MLB. Chone Figgins was DFA’s by Seattle with one year left on the 4YR/$36M contract he signed in 2009. The same happened for Cubs 1B Bryan LaHair, who made the All-Star team and hit 16 HR, but ultimately lost his job to Anthony Rizzo.

The Red Sox left RHP Zach Stewart off their roster, surprising some. Stewart was once a top prospect and came over from the White Sox in the Kevin Youklis deal, but failed to impress in his time in Boston, including two very poor starts.

Next up on the hot stove calender is November 30th, with midnight ET being the deadline to tender contracts. After that, the  Winter Meetings commence in Nashville on December 3, with the aforementioned Rule 5 Draft taking place on December 6.