Chicago Cubs Top 20 Prospects for 2011
1.) Brett Jackson, OF, Grade B+: Love the broad base of skills.
2.) Trey McNutt, RHP, Grade B+: Hard to believe this guy was a 32nd round pick. . .he’s got great stuff.
3.) Chris Carpenter, RHP, Grade B: May end up in the pen, but he’s got plus stuff and I wouldn’t give up on him as a starter yet.
4.) Jay Jackson, RHP, Grade B: I still like him more than the numbers say I should.
5.) Hayden Simpson, RHP, Grade B-: Could rank at the top next year if he does anything in the pros like he did in NCAA Division II.
6.) Reggie Golden, OF, Grade B-: Enormous potential but very raw.
7.) Josh Vitters, 3B, Grade B-. I expect this will be controversial but he really needs to get things going, and age-relative-to-league is just one factor among many.
8.) Robinson Lopez, RHP, Grade C+: High-ceiling arm, needs refinement.
9) Austin Reed, RHP, Grade C+: Huge sleeper for 2011.
10.) Alberto Cabrera, RHP, Grade C+: Another live arm that needs polish.
11.) Marquez Smith, 3B, Grade C+: Not young, but ready to help at the major league level and can catch people off-guard.
12.) D.J. LeMahieu, INF, Grade C+: I think people are a bit too down on him; he could surprise this year.
13.) Rafael Dolis, RHP, Grade C+: Another guy in the live arm/needs polish brigade.
14.) Brett Wallach, RHP, Grade C+: Another one.
15.) Brooks Raley, LHP, Grade C+: Was very effective in the second half.
16.) Su-Min Jung, RHP, Grade C+: Wasn’t great at Peoria, but I think he can get better faster than people anticipate.
17.) Austin Kirk, LHP, Grade C+: Breakthrough candidate for 2011.
18.) Jin-Yeong Kim, RHP, Grade C+: Will he be worth the big bonus?
19.) Ben Wells, RHP, Grade C: Hasn’t pitched yet, but seventh round pick from Arkansas high school has potential as a hard-throwing starter.
20.) Welington Castillo, C, Grade C: Very effective against runners, has some power, but on-base skills are sketchy.