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Braves Lose Two in Minor League Portion of Rule 5 Draft

Mike Lee and Blaine Sims were chosen in Thursday morning's Rule 5 Draft.

David Manning-USA TODAY Sports

After an uneventful Major League phase of the Rule 5 Draft in which no Braves players were taken, the Arizona Diamondbacks selected right-handed pitcher Mike Lee from Mississippi's roster in the Triple-A phase of the draft.

Lee spent a majority of 2013 in Mississippi, posting a 3.71 ERA across 128.2 innings while collecting a 79:18 strikeout-to-walk ratio. The 6'7", 235-pound righty also made one start with Triple-A Gwinnett, surrendering three runs on 10 hits across five innings. Lee was originally drafted by the Boston Red Sox and spent time in independent ball before signing with the Braves in 2012. Lee utilizes a drop-and-drive delivery, though he is still able to get decent amount of plane on his pitches due to his height and high three-quarter arm slot. He utilizes a fairly standard three-pitch repertoire with his changeup being his best secondary offering. While his stuff is fairly pedestrian, he did a great job of throwing strikes and limiting walks in 2013. The downside is that he is very hittable (160 hits in 128.2 innings) and must live on the fringes of the zone in order to succeed.

The Houston Astros selected left-handed pitcher Blaine Sims from Lynchburg's roster in the Double-A phase of the draft.

If you haven't read gondeee's piece on Sims, take the time to do so. Prior to this season, Sims was just another lefty in the Braves organization. He was signed in 2010 out of the Valley League, a collegiate summer league, after going undrafted out of Arkansas Tech. After two seasons of so-so performance in the system, the 24-year-old began regularly throwing a knuckleball last offseason and spent this year honing the pitch. He had his share of bumps in the road this season, sporting an 8.44 ERA and allowing 44 walks (and 14 wild pitches!) in over 53 innings of work between Lynchburg, Rome, and the GCL squad. The upside, however, is that he struck out over a batter per inning for the first time in his professional career. As a left-handed knuckleballer, Sims will have plenty of hurdles to jump in his ascent to the highest level, but this is a solid gamble pick by the Astros.

The Braves did not select a player in this year's Rule 5 Draft.

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