Ryan Flaherty, a former Deering High School and Vanderbilt University standout chosen 41st overall by the Cubs in the 2008 draft, has a new baseball team.

The Baltimore Orioles selected Flaherty with the fourth pick of today’s Rule 5 draft at baseball’s winter meetings in Dallas.

For a $50,000 fee, the Orioles acquire the rights to Flaherty, who must remain on their Major League roster all season or be offered back to the Cubs for half the original price.

In his fourth minor-league season with the Cubs, Flaherty spent two-thirds of his time with Double-A Tenneseee and the rest with Triple-A Iowa. He played all four infield positions and both corner outfield spots, hitting a combined .280 with 19 home runs and 88 runs batted in.

“I’m excited about it,” said Flaherty, reached this morning in Nashville. “It’s a great opportunity. I haven’t actually talked to the Orioles front office yet. They said they’d be calling me later today.”

Players become eligible for the Rule 5 draft if left off their Major League team’s 40-man roster after four minor-league seasons if they signed at 19 or later. Otherwise, they become eligible after five seasons in the minors.