Winker among 7 players protected from Rule 5 Draft

Reds have full 40-man roster after moves

November 18th, 2016

CINCINNATI -- A long-awaited moment for many up-and-coming prospects is the day they are added to the 40-man Major League roster. That day came on Friday for seven Reds Minor Leaguers, including outfielder Jesse Winker.

Along with Winker, right-handers , , Jackson Stephens and Nick Travieso and outfielders Aristides Aquino and Phillip Ervin were also protected from the Rule 5 Draft.

The additions give the Reds a full 40-man roster.

Rated as the organization's third-ranked prospect by MLBPipeline.com, the 23-year-old Winker batted .303/.397/.384 with three home runs and 45 RBIs in 106 games for Triple-A Louisville last season.

Mella, 23, is the No. 9 prospect and went 8-9 with a 3.90 ERA in 25 games (24 starts) for Class A Advanced Daytona. Over 131 2/3 innings, he allowed 150 hits and 56 walks while striking out 95. Mella, who was acquired with from the Giants in the 2015 trade for , also made one start for Louisville to end '16.

Travieso, who turns 23 on Jan. 31, was Cincinnati's first-round Draft pick in 2012 and is ranked as its No. 16 prospect. In 23 starts for Double-A Pensacola, he posted a 5-7 record with a 3.84 ERA, permitting 109 hits and 53 walks with 91 strikeouts over 117 1/3 innings.

A first-rounder in 2013 and the Reds' No. 17 prospect, the 24-year-old Ervin hit .239/.362/.399 with 13 homers and 45 RBIs at Pensacola in 123 games.

Aquino, 22, batted .273/.327/.519 with 23 homers and 79 RBIs over 125 games at Daytona. He is the system's No. 21 prospect.

Astin, 25, went 9-3 with a 2.26 ERA in 37 games (11 starts) for Pensacola. He allowed 74 hits and 25 walks with 96 strikeouts over 103 1/3 innings. Astin played in the Arizona Fall League.

Stephens, 22, compiled an 8-11 record with a 3.33 ERA in 27 games (26 starts) for Pensacola. In 151 1/3 innings, he gave up 148 hits and 41 walks while striking out 131 batters.

Among eligible players that were left unprotected were three top-30 prospects in Pensacola shortstop Calten Daal (No. 20), Pensacola third baseman Eric Jagielo (No. 25) and right-hander (No. 29), who is recovering from Tommy John surgery.

Other notable prospects at Pensacola not added were shortstop Zach Vincej, catcher/first baseman , second baseman , right-hander Evan Mitchell and left-hander Nick Routt. Left unprotected from Louisville's roster were southpaw and third baseman Seth Mejias-Brean.

Friday was the deadline to protect players on the 40-man roster from next month's Rule 5 Draft. Those eligible for the Rule 5 Draft include anyone not on the 40-man roster who was signed as an 18-year-old in 2012 or at 19 years or older in '13.

During the Rule 5 Draft, teams can select unprotected players for $50,000, and they must stay on the Major League 25-man roster of their new club for the entire season. If not, they are returned to their original organization for $25,000.

Last year, the Reds did not have any players from their organization selected in the Rule 5 Draft.