Pedro Baez, Jarret Martin and Yimi Garcia were added to the Dodgers’ 40-man roster Tuesday, protecting the three from being taken in the Rule 5 draft in December.
Baez, a converted infielder with a fastball in the upper 90s, allowed three hits, walked three and struck out six batters in 4 ⅓ scoreless innings in the Arizona Fall League — his first AFL stint on a mound. He finished the 2013 season with the Chattanooga Lookouts, where he walked eight, struck out 23 and posted a 4.24 ERA in 23 1/3 innings.
Martin, a 6-foot-4 left-hander, converted to a bullpen role in 2013 and found some success at Double-A Chattanooga. He still needs to work on his control after walking 12 batters in 10 ⅔ innings after his midseason promotion from Rancho Cucamonga.
The 23-year-old Garcia led Chattanooga with 19 saves, posting major-league ready strikeout (12.7/9 innings) and control (6.07:1 K:BB) ratios. The right-hander limited opposing hitters to a .227 batting average in 10 Arizona Fall League games.
Players who have four years of minor-league experience, including their first summer if they were drafted out of a four-year college, are eligible to be taken in the Rule 5 draft Dec. 12 if they aren’t on a 40-man roster. There are 34 players on the Dodgers’ 40-man roster. That several Rule 5-eligible players were still left unprotected speaks somewhat to the overall dearth of talent in their system, though it also could reflect a plan to sign up to six free agents this off-season.
Among the notable names left unprotected:
• Red Patterson. Never tabbed as a major-league prospect, the former 29th-round draft pick out of Southwest Oklahoma State continued his surprise ascent in 2013. He went 7-4 with a 3.03 earned-run average and averaged 9.2 strikeouts per nine innings at Triple-A Albuquerque.
• Scott Schebler. A 26th-round pick in 2010, the 23-year-old outfielder led Single-A Rancho Cucamonga in home runs (27) and RBIs (91). His .581 slugging percentage was helped by playing in the hitter-friendly California League, where his range and arm in the outfield were both above average.
• Blake Smith, who regressed in his second full year of Double-A baseball (from .267/.358/.432 to .233/.311/.375) as a full-time hitter, then went back to high-A to become a pitcher. He posted a 7.78 ERA in 21 games for Rancho Cucamonga.
• Brian Cavazos-Galvez. The 26-year-old outfielder stalled a bit in 2013, posting a .263/.303/.366 slash line at Double-A Chattanooga.
The Dodgers lost Roberto Clemente in the Rule 5 draft once, but there doesn’t appear to be a Clemente in this group. Or an Alfredo Silverio, whom the Dodgers lost in last year’s Rule 5 draft to the Miami Marlins. Silverio had Tommy John surgery in June and could be returned to the Dodgers.