Gearing up for Thursday at the Winter Meetings

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Disco Hayes.jpgThere’s not much left on the official agenda here in Indianapolis, but none of the fun stuff happens on the official agenda anyway.  For what it’s worth:

The Rule 5 draft takes place at 9 A.M. this morning. Even the prospect junkies I’ve talked to here aren’t terribly excited about it. There’s no Josh Hamilton, Johan Santana, Dan Uggla or Joakim Soria in this crowd.  Last year 21 players were selected. Only six saw major league playing time. Only three stuck all season with the teams that chose them. The draft is not going to make a tremendous difference for any team this year.

Among the potential pickees this year:  Marlins outfielder John Raynor is mildly interesting. Marlins pitcher Arquimedes Caminero is too. D-backs pitcher Hector Ambriz is someone else who has been mentioned.  You may have heard of Royals submarine pitcher Chris “Disco” Hayes, but really, his nickname is his biggest claim to fame. While submariners are evidence of all that is right and good in the universe, he’s basically a one-pitch pitcher.

Officially, that’s it.  Unofficially, teams and agents will continue to talk about the Roy Halladays and Jason Bays of the world.  But maybe not too intensely.  Many of the movers and shakers have early flights today (assuming the high winds and frigid temperatures here in Indy don’t cancel them all). As a result, the biggest deals are likely to wait for a later day.

But CTB is still on the job.  I’ll be blogging from the Marriott until they kick me out.  Aaron and Matthew will be monitoring the interwebs as well.  If it happens, we’ll tell you about it. If we miss it, we’ll make it up.  If it’s wrong, we’ll blame Jon Heyman.

Rays acquire RHP Drew Smith from Tigers

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The Rays acquired minor league reliever Drew Smith from the Tigers on Friday, per a team announcement. The move will close the loop on the trade the two teams began in January for backup outfielder Mikie Mahtook.

Smith, 23, pitched his first full season in Single-A West Michigan in 2016, turning in a 2.96 ERA, 4.3 BB/9 and 11.5 SO/9 in 48 2/3 innings. The right-hander is still several levels away from making any impact on the Rays’ major league roster, but appears to be progressing steadily in two seasons of pro ball and has delivered two runs, four walks and 12 strikeouts in his first 11 2/3 innings at High-A Lakeland this season. Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports that he’ll be reassigned to the Rays’ High-A Charlotte this week.

Yankees activate Didi Gregorius from the disabled list

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The Yankees have activated shortstop Didi Gregorius from the 10-day disabled list, the club announced on Friday. Infielder Pete Kozma was designated for assignment to clear roster space.

Gregorius, 27, suffered a strained right shoulder while playing in the World Baseball Classic last month. He’s in Friday’s starting lineup, batting sixth against the Orioles.

Last season, Gregorius hit .276/.304/.447 with 20 home runs and 70 RBI in 597 plate appearances.