The following 40-man roster players have less than five years service time and are out of minor league options. That means they must clear waivers before being sent to the minors, so the team would be at risk of losing them in attempting to do so. I’ve included players on multiyear deals. This list was compiled through MLBTR’s sources. Today, we’ll take a look at the NL East.
The Braves signed Almonte, 25, to a Major League deal in November. According to MLB.com’s Mark Bowman, he’s competing for the primary backup outfielder role with Todd Cunningham and Eury Perez. If Nick Markakis is not ready for the start of the season, that could improve Almonte’s chances of making the team.
The Braves inked Outman to a big league deal in January. Outman seems likely to be a part of the team’s Opening Day bullpen, even though they’ve also got lefty relievers James Russell and Luis Avilan. Avilan, perhaps, could be a trade candidate this month. Jaime is pretty well buried on the team’s bullpen depth chart and has had a couple of rough spring outings, so he’s probably not long for the team or at least its 40-man roster.
Dunn and Morris have two of the Marlins’ seven bullpen spots locked down. Tom D’Angelo of the Palm Beach Post wrote on Sunday that Hand is competing for one of two remaining bullpen jobs, and could slot in as the team’s long reliever. One complication is Rule 5 pick and fellow southpaw Andrew McKirahan, who would have to be returned to or at least acquired from the Cubs if he doesn’t make the team. Clark Spencer of the Miami Herald wrote about that situation on Sunday.
Mayberry definitely has a spot, and Nieuwenhuis is likely to make the Opening Day roster as well. Puello, however, figures to find his way off the Mets’ 40-man roster soon.
De Fratus is expected to make the Phillies’ bullpen. Oliver being out of options is irrelevant, because he’s a Rule 5 pick from the Pirates. As MLB.com’s Todd Zolecki noted earlier this month, the Phillies are in good position to stash a project like Oliver in their bullpen all year.
This could be the end of the road for Aumont, who is the last player remaining from the December 2009 deal in which the Phillies sent Cliff Lee to the Mariners. The 26-year-old righty has been hit hard in four outings this spring. The team is considered to have three open bullpen spots, according to Jake Kaplan of the Philadelphia Inquirer, so at least Aumont has some openings.
Will the Nationals break camp with a third lefty reliever behind Matt Thornton and Jerry Blevins? Cedeno could fill that role, though Mets reporter Adam Rubin of EPSNNewYork.com hears he’s unlikely to make the team and could be available in trade.
With Lobaton expected to serve as the backup to catcher Wilson Ramos, it’s hard to see how Leon can make the team. Moore, 28, is vying for a chance to serve as a backup at first base and left field. That might become more likely if Jayson Werth or Nate McLouth has to start the season on the DL, but there’s no indication of that at present. Aside from Lobaton, all of the Nationals’ out of options players look like trade candidates this spring.