Nationals send top Rule 5 pick to Yanks
Transaction completes Bruney deal; three others picked
INDIANAPOLIS -- The Nationals selected four players in Major League Baseball's Rule 5 Draft on Thursday and traded their top selection and the first overall pick, outfielder Jamie Hoffmann, to the Yankees to complete the deal that brought right-hander Brian Bruney to the Nationals.
Washington also selected three players in the Triple-A phase of the Draft -- right-hander Arismendy Mota from the White Sox, left-hander Michael Wlodarczyk from the Rays and outfielder Nicholas Moresi from the Astros.
The Nationals are expected to trade Mota to the Cubs at a later date. Who the Nationals will get in return is not known.
Wlodarczyk is considered a lefty specialist. He was a combined 1-4 with a 5.24 ERA for Double-A Montgomery and Triple-A Durham in 2009.
Moresi is considered an athletic center fielder who can play solid defense. This past season, he hit a combined .223 with 11 home runs and 32 RBIs for Class A Lancaster and Double-A Corpus Christi.
The Nationals also lost pitchers Zech Zinicola, Ruben De La Rosa, Terrence Engles and Johan Figuereo in the Draft.
Of the players they lost, Zinicola was the biggest name, going to the Blue Jays in the Major League phase of the Draft. He was left unprotected because he was hit hard at Triple-A Syracuse this past season. He had a 7.56 ERA in 26 games.
It's no secret that former Nationals scouting director Dana Brown, now a special assistant to Blue Jays general manager Alex Anthopoulos, believes that Zinicola can be a Major League reliever. It was Brown who encouraged former GM Jim Bowden to trade right-hander Gary Majewski in 2006, because Brown felt Zinicola would be in the big leagues the following season, which never materialized.
"The Blue Jays have a lot of information about our players," general manager Mike Rizzo said. "They know them well. We knew that Zinicola was a player the Blue Jays always liked. I think it's a testament how far we have come in our organization. We had very tough decisions because of the depth of good prospects that we have."
Prior to Thursday's Draft, Washington unconditionally released right-hander Zack Segovia to make room on the 40-man roster. He appeared in a combined 51 games and was 3-5 with a 3.24 ERA for Double-A Harrisburg and Triple-A Syracuse.
Bill Ladson is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.