Each year at Major League Baseball's Winter Meetings, the general managers have what's called the Rule 5 Draft. It's basically a way for players who are in the minor leagues, not on an organization's 40-man roster, to be selected by teams who could use the player's services on their major league roster at the present time.
On Friday, the Tigers purchased the contracts of five of their minor league players to protect them from the draft:
The Detroit Tigers today purchased the contracts of left-handed pitcher Matt Hoffman from Triple-A Toledo, right-hander Tyler Stohr and left-hander Casey Crosby from Double-A Erie, outfielder Avisail Garcia from Class A Lakeland and infielder Hernan Perez from Class A West Michigan.
It effect, they were added to the club's 40-man protected list to keep them out of next month's Rule 5 draft.
The Tigers also outrighted disappointing shortstop prospect Cale Iorg to Toledo, making him available for the draft. With the purchasing of these five contracts and the recent Laird signing, the Tigers currently have 39 players protected for the draft.