Cubs Farm System And Prospects Discussion Thread

CSF77

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Alzolay took a no hitter into the 5th than gave up a solo shot. Ended the game with 2 hits 2 walks 6 k's over 6 innings with 1 ER.
Had to make a early predict: Alozay on the team by July and DeLaCruz finishes off in Iowa
 

beckdawg

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I'm starting to think Rollie Lacy needs the Rucker treatment. Little was pretty meh again today only going 4.2 giving up 4. Lacy came in and shut the door throwing 3.1 shut out innings but SB didn't score. On the season he's thrown 17.2 giving up 2 ER with 5 hits, 5 walks and 18 k's. That's a 0.57 WHIP and a 9.41 k/9 with a 2.61 bb/9. A few more outings like this and IDK how you can keep him in the pen.
 

beckdawg

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mlb.com's top 30 international prospects are out today. Of guys apparently tied to the cubs are these guys

Joel Machado | Rank: 28 Hometown: Barlovento, Venezuela
Position: LHP Age: 16 DOB: 02/09/2002
Bats: L Throws: L Height: 6'0" Weight: 165 lb.Watch
Scouting grades: Fastball: 55 | Curve: 50 | Changeup: 55 | Control: 50 | Overall: 55
Machado is an athletic, projectable left-handed pitcher with good arm action and lots of room to grow.

He made himself into a more appealing prospect after growing a couple of inches in height and adding close to 20 pounds while also increasing the velocity of his fastball from the 85-87 mph range to 89-90 in the last year. The teenager's repertoire also features a changeup at 80-81 mph and a curveball that usually hovers in the 70-mph range. Both pitches are projected to be average or above average with the change ahead of the breaking ball right now.

Machado has a confident presence on the mound and has proven to be an aggressive strike-thrower. He's already able to spot his fastball to both sides of the plate, and like most pitchers his age, he'll improve on that part of his game once he enters a team's academy and can work with a coaching instructor on a daily basis.

Machado is from Barlovento, Venezuela, and is trained by Roberto Vahlis. The Cubs are the favorite to sign him.
Jose Lopez | Rank: 17 Hometown: Santiago, Dominican Republic
Position: OF Age: 16 DOB: 01/04/2002
Bats: L Throws: R Height: 5'10" Weight: 167 lb.Watch
Scouting grades: Hit: 50 | Power: 50 | Run: 55 | Arm: 55 | Field: 50
Standing at 5-foot-10 and weighing close to 170 pounds, Lopez is a former youth league star and participant in Major League Baseball's RBI program in the Dominican Republic.

At the plate, the left-handed hitter has a small hitch but otherwise boasts a free and easy swing. The ball flies off of Lopez's bat and he has shown the potential for more power in the future. He's not as physical as some of the other top prospects, but he makes hard contact to all fields. The belief is that Lopez will be able to generate more power once he signs with a big league team and works on his mechanics in a club's academy on a daily basis. Lopez has a chance to stay in center field and hit in the middle of the lineup one day.

Lopez is already a plus runner -- he's been clocked at 6.4 seconds in the 60-yard run -- and evaluators believe the tool will help carry him through the Minor League system.

Lopez is from Santiago, Dominican Republic, and is trained by Fausto Garcia. The Cubs are the favorite to sign him.
Richard Gallardo | Rank: 5 Hometown: Maracay, Venezuela
Position: P Age: 16 DOB: 09/06/2001
Bats: R Throws: R Height: 6'1" Weight: 187 lb.Watch
Scouting grades: Fastball: 65 | Curve: 50 | Changeup: 55 | Control: 60
The best pitching prospect out of Venezuela and the top hurler overall in this year's class, Gallardo is smart and fearless on the mound. Evaluators believe he can be a top-of-the-rotation type of pitcher if he stays healthy and continues to develop his tools at a normal pace. He projects to have average or above-average tools across the board and he's already considered advanced for his age.

The teenager's best pitch is his fastball, but he also projects to feature a good curveball and an above-average changeup. He already shows good command and feel for his pitches and the mix results in a lot of swing-and-misses. Gallardo is still growing, and the hope is that he will increase the velocity and overall command of his fastball with age.

Back in February, Gallardo mixed all of his pitches to strike out five of the six batters he faced at the MLB International Prospect Showcase in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. He did walk a batter, but more importantly, he showed a plus fastball and emerging secondary pitches.

Gallardo is from Maracay, Venezuela, and trains with Andres Veliz. The Cubs are the favorite to sign him.
The two pitchers would be #1 and #5 based on these rankings. There's a few other guys who've yet to indicate anything like Osiel Rodriguez(#3 pitcher) but I'm not sure given the cubs already apparently have 3 guys basically locked in that they will have much more room for other guys barring something strange. New rules make it harder to go nuts.

Edit: should also mention Machado is mlb.com's highest rated lefty.
 

beckdawg

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Really diggin what I'm seeing out of Lange. He totally skipped A which is a good sign but had another great outing today going 7 giving up a run 3 hits and 5 k's but again with 0 walks. That gives him 22 k's and 4 walks over 28 IP with 9 ER. K rate is a tad lower than you'd like to see from him(7.07 k/9) but his walk rate is fantastic(1.29 bb/9). Given he needed to work on a third pitch coming out of the draft and given the cubs often will essentially take away a guys best pitch to force them to develop, it's possible they are having him use his curve less which is potentially why his k rate is down. Could also be the fact he took a pretty big jump from A- to A+ in competition. But if he stays under a 2.5 bb/9 and his K rate starts to tick up into the 8-9 range we have a winner here IMO.

Little also had a sorta ok night given where he's been since turning pro. He threw 4.2 of 3 hit ball with 2 walks and 5 k's. He gave up 3 unearned runs. You want to see more out of a 1st round pick but it's a step in the right direction.

Hitting in the system is kind of shit to be blunt. Like what I've seen out of Miguel Amaya though. He's came into today hitting .268/.359/.518 and has gone 2-3 so far. For a glove first catcher I'm taking that all day every day. Also like what I'm seeing out of Ademan(.258/.324/.364 not bad given age gap) and Eddy Martinez(.262/.357/.393 plus 2-3 today). Only other hitters in the system who've caught my eye are Trent Giambrone(.308/.390/.442) and Zagunis(.333/.438/.417). There's a couple of other guys with .450+ BABIP who have decent lines but not sure how sustainable those are. Giambrone is kind of interesting. His BABIP is high(.400) but he hit .292/.404/.433 with similar ISO and bb/k rates in A- over 203 PAs in 2016. He only hit .242/.297/.348 last year in A+ but like Lange he entirely skipped A and his BABIP was a bit low at .279. His bb/k rate was lower on his walk rate but his K rate has mostly remained around 19-20%. Difference between this year and last is his ISO is back up to the .140 range and some of his walks have returned(11.7 % vs 6.8 % from 2016. It's doubtful he'll ever be a full on top tier prospect because he's already 24 but he very well could be your next Bote type. Looks to be a fairly valuable utility guy who can play all 4 infield positions.

Of the other top 30 type bats, Velazquez hasn't played and likely starts in A- after the draft. Zack Short, Galindo, Vosler, and DJ Wilson have for the most part looked fine but have all had k issues. Wilson also is missing some power. Bote has been fine and obviously made it to the majors.
 

CSF77

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Really diggin what I'm seeing out of Lange. He totally skipped A which is a good sign but had another great outing today going 7 giving up a run 3 hits and 5 k's but again with 0 walks. That gives him 22 k's and 4 walks over 28 IP with 9 ER. K rate is a tad lower than you'd like to see from him(7.07 k/9) but his walk rate is fantastic(1.29 bb/9). Given he needed to work on a third pitch coming out of the draft and given the cubs often will essentially take away a guys best pitch to force them to develop, it's possible they are having him use his curve less which is potentially why his k rate is down. Could also be the fact he took a pretty big jump from A- to A+ in competition. But if he stays under a 2.5 bb/9 and his K rate starts to tick up into the 8-9 range we have a winner here IMO.

Little also had a sorta ok night given where he's been since turning pro. He threw 4.2 of 3 hit ball with 2 walks and 5 k's. He gave up 3 unearned runs. You want to see more out of a 1st round pick but it's a step in the right direction.

Hitting in the system is kind of shit to be blunt. Like what I've seen out of Miguel Amaya though. He's came into today hitting .268/.359/.518 and has gone 2-3 so far. For a glove first catcher I'm taking that all day every day. Also like what I'm seeing out of Ademan(.258/.324/.364 not bad given age gap) and Eddy Martinez(.262/.357/.393 plus 2-3 today). Only other hitters in the system who've caught my eye are Trent Giambrone(.308/.390/.442) and Zagunis(.333/.438/.417). There's a couple of other guys with .450+ BABIP who have decent lines but not sure how sustainable those are. Giambrone is kind of interesting. His BABIP is high(.400) but he hit .292/.404/.433 with similar ISO and bb/k rates in A- over 203 PAs in 2016. He only hit .242/.297/.348 last year in A+ but like Lange he entirely skipped A and his BABIP was a bit low at .279. His bb/k rate was lower on his walk rate but his K rate has mostly remained around 19-20%. Difference between this year and last is his ISO is back up to the .140 range and some of his walks have returned(11.7 % vs 6.8 % from 2016. It's doubtful he'll ever be a full on top tier prospect because he's already 24 but he very well could be your next Bote type. Looks to be a fairly valuable utility guy who can play all 4 infield positions.

Of the other top 30 type bats, Velazquez hasn't played and likely starts in A- after the draft. Zack Short, Galindo, Vosler, and DJ Wilson have for the most part looked fine but have all had k issues. Wilson also is missing some power. Bote has been fine and obviously made it to the majors.
Cubs Den:

Advanced A

Myrtle Beach 5, Salem 1



Hopefully this is a coming out party for Alex Lange. There were positive signs in his last outing after Anderson Tavarez and Buddy Bailey spoke to him about working at a faster pace. This time out he added dominance to the quick pace. Not only was he pitching with the best command that I have seen from him, but he continues to make progress with his changeup as well. He is now showing command and confidence in the pitch and got a couple of swinging strikeouts using it. It was especially important in this game since his curveball was not at its best. He retired the final 13 batters he faced.




For a while it appeared that Brendon Little (L, 0-2, 6.00)might have his own coming out party and earn his first professional win. He had struggled to get out of the first inning in his first two starts. In his last outing he made strides before running out of steam in the 4th. Ultimately, he followed a similar pattern in this game, but he was much more effective through the first three innings as he did not walk a single batter and allowed just two base runners. A lead off walk in the 4th could have signaled trouble, but Little actually continued to pitch well. It was a fielding error by 3rd baseman Cam Balego that allowed the first run to score and extended the inning, eventually leading to a two run homer by Jared Walker that gave the Loons the lead. All three runs against Little were unearned.
 

beckdawg

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Tyson Miller with another good outing. Given his size and some what decent draft status would think he would be a fringe guy for top 30 midseason. He's over 9 k/9 and under 2.5 walks.
 

chibears55

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4 former cubs top prospects looking pretty good so far this year...


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CSF77

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Vill: Bryant blocked. Granted FA and signed with SD. He still has holes in this swing and the league ignored him up to this. Jury out.

Same with Candy. Bryant block.

Torres gave ya a WS...

Soler is a play away from the DL.... the cash spent on him did not pay for his value. Sitting in the minors getting a major league deal then on the DL all of the time. Ya what Wade gave last year was worth more than his whole contract and wasted time on him.
 

brett05

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I see it more as a show that the organization has turned around their inability to develop everyday position players
 

CSF77

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I see it more as a show that the organization has turned around their inability to develop everyday position players
Vitters was a risk. Jackson was a late round. Colvin bad pick. 2002 was a horrible draft. Cory Patterson should have been great. He fell short at the major league level.

Ryan Harvey was a major bust. Never made it past AA.

So I feel you there. Jim Hendry was a better at the major league level vs able to run a farm system. That is why they overhauled the whole organization. It was inept.
 

brett05

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Vitters was a risk. Jackson was a late round. Colvin bad pick. 2002 was a horrible draft. Cory Patterson should have been great. He fell short at the major league level.

Ryan Harvey was a major bust. Never made it past AA.

So I feel you there. Jim Hendry was a better at the major league level vs able to run a farm system. That is why they overhauled the whole organization. It was inept.
In fairness to Jim, he did have the #1 farm at one point.
 

CSF77

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In fairness to Jim, he did have the #1 farm at one point.
It really was not that good. Only his aquisations of Rich Hill and Shark amounted to something. Of the whole nothing was remarkable.

2003: They picked Harvey #3. Nick Markakis went the next pick as a LHP and converted to RF...

2002: Matt Cain went 4 picks after Brownlie.

2005 Theo pick Elsbury 2 picks after the Cubs pick Pawelek.

2007 Cubs have #3 pick. Matt Wieters goes 2 picks after. Bumgarner #10. Heyward 14, Porcello #27

2010: Hayden Simpson #16. This had to be the crappiest draft ever... Mike Foltynewicz 2 picks after. then Christian Yelich Aaron Sanchez Taijuan Walker sad really.

2011 is when he finally did something right Javier Baez. But he passed on Cory Spangenberg, George Springer Sonny Gray. So there is still some stuff to be said here.

Theo isn't perfect either.

2012: Picked Almora but could have go with Giolito who was seen as the early #1. Fell to 16. Wacha went 19. Cory Seager #18. So drafting Almora was pretty questionable.

2014 could have drafted Nola vs Schwarber. I love Kyle but Nola is TOR while Schwarber is showing platoon splits.
 

beckdawg

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It really was not that good. Only his aquisations of Rich Hill and Shark amounted to something. Of the whole nothing was remarkable.

2003: They picked Harvey #3. Nick Markakis went the next pick as a LHP and converted to RF...

2002: Matt Cain went 4 picks after Brownlie.

2005 Theo pick Elsbury 2 picks after the Cubs pick Pawelek.

2007 Cubs have #3 pick. Matt Wieters goes 2 picks after. Bumgarner #10. Heyward 14, Porcello #27

2010: Hayden Simpson #16. This had to be the crappiest draft ever... Mike Foltynewicz 2 picks after. then Christian Yelich Aaron Sanchez Taijuan Walker sad really.

2011 is when he finally did something right Javier Baez. But he passed on Cory Spangenberg, George Springer Sonny Gray. So there is still some stuff to be said here.

Theo isn't perfect either.

2012: Picked Almora but could have go with Giolito who was seen as the early #1. Fell to 16. Wacha went 19. Cory Seager #18. So drafting Almora was pretty questionable.

2014 could have drafted Nola vs Schwarber. I love Kyle but Nola is TOR while Schwarber is showing platoon splits.
Honestly don't think you have a firm grasp of how teams actually approach drafts and the reason Hendry failed. You don't fail in the mlb draft because you "take bad players." Everyone takes bad players. You fail because of HOW you draft. Hendry had an over reliance on HS picks high in the draft. If you're going with that approach you have to understand what you're doing. By their very nature those players are boom or bust. That's how you can get the best pitcher of this generation(kershaw) with the 7th pick and the best hitter of this generation(Trout) with the 25th pick.

If you then contrast that with the drafts that obviously have done well at the top under theo and you see a polar opposite. In fact, I'd argue that the cubs in particular are good at finding college players with warts. People didn't think Schwarber could play a position. Happ didn't fit easily into a natural position. Bryant was a question of staying at third that likely stopped him from being a top pick.

As for "mistakes" theo has made, Almora and Schwarber weren't mistakes. First off as I recall Giolito had an arm injury for a guy who was a HS pitcher. That's about as risky as a prospect as they come. You don't build a farm system with that sort of gamble. Almora wasn't a tool shed that some top 10 picks were and he wasn't a college guy but he's about as safe as picks come for HS bats. First of all, CF is the most difficult position other than possibly catcher to fill. Most MLB CF are poor defenders. Last year there were 9 CF who had a positive UZR/DRS among players with qualified innings. We've known all along Almora was a gold glove type defender and obviously this year is proving that. The question was how much can he hit? What we knew even early on in his career is that Almora has elite contact. He doesn't k much. Again, that as metrics go for success is an incredibly safe play. The main questions were does he develop power and can he learn to walk more.

As for Wacha/Seager, Wacha wasn't thought of as an elite level talent either. The thought was he resembled Jon Garland. Saying Almora was a mistake because of a guy who has a 3.83 career ERA with 7.97 k/9 and 2.94 bb/9 to me is pretty silly. That's basically a #3 starter or probably worse on a contending team. As for Seager, I mean he went to the 18th pick. The question on him at the time I believe was whether or not he stayed at SS and I think he had a fair amount of swing and miss early on. Good for the dodgers to find a guy that late. But picking him out is the definition of cherry picking. Among HS bats mlb.com thought was better include D.J. Davis, Gavin Cecchini, David Dahl, and Courtney Hawkins. Davis went 17th, Hawkins went 13th, Cecchini went 12th, and Dahl went 10th. Russell also went ahead of Seager at #11.

As for Schwarber, you're ignoring the reason he was picked. The cubs thought he was the best bat in the draft. But the rest of the industry didn't. MLB.com had him as the 16th best player headed into that draft. The reason the cubs took him aside from liking his bat was it allowed them to use more money later in the draft on Cease. Schwarber signed for $3,125,000. Aiken didn't sign. Kolek the #2 pick signed for $6,000,000. Rodon the #3 pick signed for $6,582,000. Nick Gordon the #5 pick signed for $3,851,000. Alex Jackson the #6 pick signed for $4,200,000. Aaron Nola the #7 pick signed for $3,300,900. It's not until you get to Kyle Freeland the #8 pick who signed for $2,300,000 that you see someone signed for less than Schwarber and even if you get down to Trea Turner with the #14 pick he signed for $2,900,000. In other words, they likely saved close to a million in draft slot money vs a similarly slotted player like gordon/jackson.

As for rather having Nola, he's not an ace. He wasn't then and he isn't now. An "ace" need three plus pitches at a bare minimum and the scouting on him coming into the draft was he had a plus fastball/change and great control. He's a mid rotation starter who would move quickly because A) he was a college arm and B) he already had great command. If that's what you get out of a top 10 pick you're probably happy but for the #4 pick in a draft that isn't high upside.

As for Schwarber being a "platoon" guy, think that's also wrong. He's got issues with LHP no doubt but you have to remember he's only had 153 ABs vs LHP in the majors and in his 49 ABs in 2014 vs LHP in the minors he hit .265/.368/.531 vs .318/.403/.573. So there's certainly a BA gap there but the walk rate and slugging are likely the save if his average was better. In 2015 in AAA he hit .379/.419/.759 vs LHP vs .290/.389/.516 in 29 ABs. Last year he hit .353/.421/.882 vs LHP and .333/.520/.556 vs RHP in 17 ABs. So in essence, you're looking at a guy who largely dominated minor league lefties over 95 ABs. In total that's 248 ABs vs LHP since he was drafted. Obviously MLB pitching can exploit flaws he has right now. Do you know how long it took Rizzo in the majors before he finally started hitting LHP? In 2011 he hit .172/.273/.345. In 2012 he hit .208/.243/.356. In 2013 he hit .189/.282/.342. That's 352 ABs in the majors. And unlike Schwarber, Rizzo had a lot more time in the minors. He had 479 ABs vs LHP in the minors before he finally stuck in the majors in 2012. In other words, that's 831 pro at bats vs LHP before Rizzo finally clicked vs LHP. And obviously Rizzo is probably a borderline hall of famer at the moment assuming health going forward.

Simply put, would you rather have Schwarber and Cease or Nola? I don't think that's a tough question. And given the cubs knew Cease had an arm injury they could likely surmise that he wasn't going to get drafted high enough for most teams to pay him properly. So, if they also liked Cease a lot which.... i mean they drafted him so of course they did.... you are nailing two birds with one stone. And while Cease is far from a guarantee, his upside is more than Nola's was. The reason Nola went so high wasn't talent. It was because he was a safe pick.
 

chibears55

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4 former cubs top prospects looking pretty good so far this year...


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Didnt think this simple post of recent prospects was going to turn into a 20 year history..lol

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CSF77

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Didnt think this simple post of recent prospects was going to turn into a 20 year history..lol

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You should have known better.

Banter is good for the forum. I’ll agree with most Beck but as I said looking at it in hinesight Hendry missed on many drafts. I believe mostly due to trying to commit little resourse that direction.

The saving cash bit on Schwarber I can buy that part. It ended up gains by Q and that part is fine.

Almora I really don’t care honestly. At the time Appel was falling and Theo stuck to his guns. I personally wanted Max Fried who went to SD. He has been a injury case also. But the book is still out on him with Atl. But he is a big 6’4” lefty that you can toss some risk at.

All said and done they did fine with the draft. Every first round is on the team sense 2011. Not many can say that.
 

chibears55

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Dillon Maples has struck out a batter in each of his eight appearances, he’s struck out at least two in his last seven outings, and has rung up at least three in this last three. That includes a game in which he struck out four — without allowing a walk or hit — in a single inning. All told, he’s racked up 19 strikeouts in 8.1 innings, which comes to — math is hard, folks, bear with me — a whopping 20.53 K/9.

Hope to see him up this year..
Be a nice live arm to add with Edwards Chisek and Morrow to close out games



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CSF77

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Dillon Maples has struck out a batter in each of his eight appearances, he’s struck out at least two in his last seven outings, and has rung up at least three in this last three. That includes a game in which he struck out four — without allowing a walk or hit — in a single inning. All told, he’s racked up 19 strikeouts in 8.1 innings, which comes to — math is hard, folks, bear with me — a whopping 20.53 K/9.

Hope to see him up this year..
Be a nice live arm to add with Edwards Chisek and Morrow to close out games



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Ya know talking down on Yu who strikes out a ton in the Majors with little to show and talking up Maples who strikes out a ton with little to show in the Minors is a bit confusing to me.

Maples stayed at Iowa for a reason. Just like Tseng did. Neither are Major League Quality Pitchers right now. The numbers support this. And singling out a stat like strike outs doesn’t change that fact.

Alozay is the only pitcher making a statement early on. And it is early on. If they do decide on making a move it would either be injury related or they trade a short time pen arm. But I would look at Alozay as the “hot” prospect. Maples and Tseng both have failed in their development and both made a come back. Both are on borrowed time and have to be dominant at the level they play at to advance.

Not a single stat exploitation
 

Twinndaddy

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So I don't post much but I love to follow my home team Cubs and all of the minor league teams and players. This year has been a very, well, terrible year so far for our minor league team's records except for this weekend.
So up to this last Saturday the Cubs minor league affiliates have played on 29 days. Out of those 29 days only 3 days have they had more wins then losses. That's correct 26 times they were either .500 or most of the time had more losses than wins. I doubt that this terrible display of baseball could ever be duplicated again. Well something happened on Saturday. They starting a winning streak, now 3 out of 3 days they have more wins than losses. Three in a row. Until then they only had 3 in 29 days. Wow, and two of those days were 4-0. I'm not sure if they are turning it around or if lady luck is trying to even things out a bit. I also know that winning minor league games is never the ultimate goal of a team but it does show the overall strength of your minor league system.

What I can tell you that after following the draft and minor leagues closely for over 15 years is that our minor league system is very dry (yeah everyone knows right). Thankfully we have a major league club full of talent but as we are noticing now that when one reliever or started goes down, we do not have a suitable replacement. Darvish is down and Tseng will replace him tonight but Tseng has been struggling lately.

Anyway just to put it in perspective out of the top prospects in baseball, our highest is Alzolay which is ranked at 134 by John Sickels from SB Nation Minorleagueball.
This year unlike the last couple years when it's time to go get a piece from another team, the best we can provide them with is picks 134 and higher where some clubs can give them their 4th or 5th best prospect who is still in the top 100. So the only other way we can get a piece we need is to trade major league talent. So instead of helping our team, at the same time we will be hurting it.

So how did we get this way. Absolutely terrible drafting after the 10th pick in the draft. We are great at picking top 10 talent but have not hit once yet on anything in late round 1 or after. In fact all the pitching the Cubs have picked in the first 10 rounds of the last 5 years have given us no bench strength. Nothing. Only talent we've brought up are those who we've traded for or gotten in the International Market. Our major league team in the last two years have seen only a couple pitchers that were drafted by the Cubs pitch for the Cubs. Maples being one of them, but only a few innings(5.1).

So how is our current top 15 pitchers according to MLB doing so far this year? The players that MLB says are our best pitching prospects? 1. Alzolay - 2.91 ERA AAA 2. Cruz 5.93 ERA AA 3. Albertos 20.77 ERA A 4. Lange 4.15 ERA A+ 5. Little 6.50 ERA A 6. Hatch 3.07 ERA AA 7. Tseng 8.04 ERA AAA 8. Maples 2.61 ERA AAA 9. Steele Has not played 10. Estrada Has not played 11. Uelman 10.20 ERA A 12. Thompson 3.56 ERA A+ 13. Moreno Has not played 14. Rucker Has not played 15. Mills 5.20 ERA AAA
Thats a 2.61 ERA by Dillion Maples, a reliever, that has our best ERA this year out of the top 15 and he has 10 walks in 10.1 innings.

I don't think that these are necessarily our best pitchers, especially Maples, will he ever keep the walks down enough to be effective? I think they are just hoping.

So I do think we have a couple sapphires in the system, no diamonds. Here are a few players that I'm excited about that I think have a chance of becoming solid major leaguers.

Zach Short - Was just drafted in 2016. Only second year in minors and at 22 he is already in AA. Though he's only 22 on the top list of prospects according to MLB, I think he should be top 5. Even though his batting average is not that great so far this year, he is walking a lot and 12 of his 20 hits have been for extra base hits. He also has some speed as he stole 18 bags last year. I can see him being a .280 ave .375 obp .450slg hitter with 20HR and 20SB in the majors some day. That would be ceiling though he does have 5HR in only 92 this year.

Dakota Mekkes - Still can't break the top 30 on the MLB list. Though this pitcher has dominated at EVERY level. In the minors so far he has 105IP, with only 53 hits though 45 walks. This year he has allowed only 2 hits in 12.1 IP. He has 7BB but 2 of them were intentional. Oh he also has 16 K. The worst ERA at any level that he has had is 2.12.

Jeffrey Baez – I’ve followed him from when he was stealing 6 bases a game in the Dominican Summer League in 2011. Well he has added power now and this year is dominating AA pitching at a .354, .409, .633 clip. That is a 1.042 OPS. He also has 9SB. Not sure if he can keep up this pace but I’m following him very closely and if he’s still hitting this well in July don’t be surprised to see him jump up to top 100 prospect status.


Aramis Ademan - So he is #2 on the MLB list. He is our best hitting prospect. The Cubs have really pushed him so far. He is in A+ at 19 though he has never his over .284 and his career slugging is .379. He's having a tough time in A+ where he is hitting .200 in his last 10 games. He's a smaller poor man's Starlin Castro. His average has never been as high as Starlin's was in the minors and he has never stolen as many bases and they were at the same levels at about the same age. I'm assuming best ceiling for Ademan is .275AVE 15HR 15SB. Not too bad you may think except that is the ceiling and that is our BEST hitting prospect according to MLB.

I know everything I wrote is subjective and no I am no pro scout. I do watch several minor league games a week on TV so I do see some of these prospects play but I'm no expert. Let me know what some of your favorite prospects are out there, so I can start following them more closely.
 

CSF77

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Steele had T.J. He is out for the year.

Abbott and Assad are having solid starts.

Miller and Swarmer at MB are looking good

But

I’ve noticed with pitching in general that AA is the level where the pretenders fall off.

Then at AAA where you see 6 year minor league hitters floating team to team trying to catch a gig end up wrecking the young talent. I see Tseng in this boat right now.

Rucker also is struggling at AA. So we will see if his talent is good enough to advance.

The two guys that I’m watching the most are Alozay and ODLC. those 2 should end up major league players. Hitting side it is hard to say right now. I have a hard time being ecstatic about any of them. I like Bote and I wouldn’t mind seeing him given a opertunity to play at the major league level. Especially if he can play SS. It makes him into a offensive UI.
 
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