Braves add 4 players to 40-man roster prior to Rule 5 protection deadline

The Atlanta Braves selected the contracts of catcher Alex Jackson and pitchers Patrick Weigel, Huascar Ynoa and Jacob Webb prior to Tuesday evening’s deadline to protect players from Rule 5 draft eligibility.

The team’s 40-man roster is now full.

The four prospects currently rank in MLB Pipeline’s top-30 Braves prospect list while three — Jackson, Weigel and Ynoa — rank in the organization’s top 25 according to FanGraphs.

Weigel, 24, might be the highest upside selection after making his way back to the mound following Tommy Johny surgery in June 2017. The 6-foot-6 right-hander dominated during his rise to Triple-A as one of Atlanta’s most promising young arms before needing elbow surgery, but he could factor into the MLB equation as early as 2019 if he’s healthy.

Ynoa, the 20-year-old trade return in the Jaime Garcia deal, made it to High-A Florida last season but is likely at least one year away from competing for a spot at the major-league level. The 25-year-old Webb saved 18 games with a 3.15 ERA in 2018 while climbing up to Triple-A, making him a viable bullpen depth piece for Alex Anthopoulos’ front office.

Jackson, 22, was one of the few notable Braves prospects who turned in a disappointing 2018 season, hitting below league average for Double-A Mississippi and Triple-A Gwinnett, but catching depth is hard to find and the former top-10 pick offers raw power to spare. Though the Braves are in the market for a MLB catcher to pair with Tyler Flowers, Jackson could be the first option as an injury replacement.