Cubs Farm System And Prospects Discussion Thread

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Keith Law has the Cubs as the 2nd most improved farm system of 2021...

Chicago Cubs (pre-2021 ranking: No. 26)

The Cubs traded everyone, or just about, and acquired a set of prospects who, taken as a whole, bring a strong balance of probability and long-term upside, adding a needed infusion to a system that was down after years of low draft picks and trades. They added center-field prospect Pete Crow-Armstrong, a first-rounder last year and a top-100 prospect coming into 2021, for Javier Báez; Crow-Armstrong is out for the year after surgery on his non-throwing shoulder, but his outlook as a potential leadoff hitter with plus defense remains intact. They picked up a pair of upside players for Anthony Rizzo, getting center fielder Kevin Alcantara, just 18 and now hitting .365/.443/.577 in 61 plate appearances between the two complex leagues; and a real lottery ticket in hard-throwing Alexander Vizcaino, who has been ineffective in the brief time he’s pitched this year after missing two months due to injury. And they got power-hitting corner outfielder Alexander Canario, who has four homers in nine games since the trade, plus command right-hander Caleb Kilian, a potential mid-rotation starter, for Kris Bryant. They even landed a prospect for extra outfielder Jake Marisnick, getting right-hander Anderson Espinoza, a two-time Tommy John surgery recipient who’ll probably move to the bullpen but work with two plus pitches there.

The Cubs had a solid draft, getting a low-ceiling but high-probability starter in lefty Jordan Wicks in the first round, then going for more ceiling with their next three picks, including a pair of high school hitters and then toolsy Arkansas outfielder Christian Franklin, a plus defender with power who needs swing and approach work, in the fourth round.

Meanwhile, their top prospect coming into 2021, outfielder Brennen Davis, has had a huge breakout and now sits at No. 20 on my most recent rankings, while the early returns on Reginald Preciado, acquired in the Yu Darvish trade last winter, are very promising. The Cubs came into the year in the bottom five of all farm systems, but they’ve pushed themselves up at least to the midpoint.
 

CSF77

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3. Thompson: Coming soon?
Thompson is currently working out of the rotation for Triple-A Iowa, going through a similar build-up program as Steele prior to the lefty's promotion.
On Sunday, Thompson spun 4 1/3 no-hit frames with seven strikeouts and no walks for Iowa. He was named one of the Triple-A players of the week, and he now has 14 2/3 scoreless innings through four starts back with the affiliate.




"Keegan's proven he can pitch at the big league level," Ross said. "Now, it's about sustaining that over the course of four, five, six innings, right?"
Ross said the goal for Thompson -- who posted a 2.21 ERA in 27 games for the Cubs earlier this season -- would be to get to around 75 pitches before returning to the big leagues. The righty built up to 61 in his last outing.
"There's a lot of moving parts," Ross said. "But it won't be long, I'm sure, until he's definitely in the conversation to come up here and pitch."
 

JP Hochbaum

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Ryan Jensen, 2019 first round pick, was promoted to AA. If he plays well there next year he can get some bullpen time on the Cubs and get stretched out like Thompson/Steele.
 

Chicagosports89

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Ryan Jensen, 2019 first round pick, was promoted to AA. If he plays well there next year he can get some bullpen time on the Cubs and get stretched out like Thompson/Steele.
I wouldn't mind seeing Alzolay, Marquez, Jensen and 1 of Steele or Thompson in the pen next year. Hopefully Carraway can get it together too. That pen would be interesting
 

CSF77

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RANKPLAYERPOSITIONTEAMLEVELETAAGEHEIGHT / WEIGHTBATSTHROWS
1
Brennen Davis
OFChicago CubsAA
2022216' 4" / 210 lbsRR
2
Brailyn Marquez
LHPChicago CubsAA
2022226' 4" / 185 lbsLL
3
Cristian Hernandez
SSChicago CubsROK
2025176' 2" / 175 lbsRR
4
Miguel Amaya
CChicago CubsAA
2021226' 2" / 230 lbsRR
5
Pete Crow-Armstrong
OFChicago CubsA
2024196' 0" / 184 lbsLL
6
Jordan Wicks
LHPChicago Cubs-2023216' 3" / 220 lbsLL
7
Ed Howard
SSChicago CubsA
2024196' 2" / 185 lbsRR
8
Reginald Preciado
SS/3BChicago CubsROK
2024186' 4" / 185 lbsSR
9
Owen Caissie
OFChicago CubsROK
2024196' 4" / 190 lbsLR
10
Kohl Franklin
RHPChicago CubsA
2023216' 4" / 195 lbsRR
11
James Triantos
SSChicago CubsROK
2025186' 1" / 195 lbsRR
12
Alexander Canario
OFChicago CubsA+
2023216' 1" / 165 lbsRR
13
DJ Herz
LHPChicago CubsA
2023206' 2" / 175 lbsRL
14
Caleb Kilian
RHPChicago CubsAA
2022246' 4" / 180 lbsRR
15
Ryan Jensen
RHPChicago CubsAA
2022236' 0" / 190 lbsRR
16
Kevin Alcantara
OFChicago CubsROK
2023196' 6" / 188 lbsRR
17
Kevin Made
SS/3BChicago CubsA
2024185' 10" / 160 lbsRR
18
Yohendrick Pinango
OFChicago CubsA
2024195' 11" / 170 lbsLL
19
Justin Steele
LHPChicago CubsMLB
2021266' 2" / 205 lbsLL
20
Alexander Vizcaino
RHPChicago CubsA+
2022246' 2" / 160 lbsRR
21
Christopher Morel
OF/INFChicago CubsAA
2022225' 11" / 145 lbsRR
22
Christian Franklin
OFChicago CubsROK
2024215' 11" / 195 lbsRR
23
Greg Deichmann
OFChicago CubsAAA
2021266' 2" / 205 lbsLR
24
Chase Strumpf
3B/2BChicago CubsAA
2023236' 1" / 170 lbsRR
25
Cole Roederer
OFChicago CubsA+
2023216' 0" / 180 lbsLL
26
Chris Clarke
RHPChicago CubsA+
2023236' 7" / 215 lbsRR
27
Jordan Nwogu
OFChicago CubsA
2023226' 3" / 230 lbsRR
28
Manuel Rodriguez
RHPChicago CubsMLB
2021255' 11" / 210 lbsRR
29
Pablo Aliendo
CChicago CubsA
2024206' 0" / 170 lbsRR
30
Riley Thompson
RHPChicago CubsA
2022256' 4" / 210 lbsLR
 

JP Hochbaum

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5 of our top 10 are all under 19. They could all easily enter the top 100. That is why these ratings are very age based and current development. In 1-2 years, if players develop, we can have the best farm system without having to add anyone.
 

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5 of our top 10 are all under 19. They could all easily enter the top 100. That is why these ratings are very age based and current development. In 1-2 years, if players develop, we can have the best farm system without having to add anyone.
PCA was on Keith Law’s top 100 prior to his injury. Fangraphs top 120 already has Kevin Alcantara at #116 and Reginald Preciado at #119. Preciado is the 2nd youngest player in their ranking and Alcantara is the 5th youngest.
 

CSF77

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That was the viewpoint that I heard.

Amaya and Marquez have been injured. Amaya has a fear of no power. Marquez has a delivery that generates fear of sustainability for 5 innings per outting. The drop was more so related to injuries preventing the players to prove the doubters wrong.

The rest are too far away to make much of right now. Davis was in that boat at first and now he is a top 15.
 

JP Hochbaum

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DJ Herz now has the highest K Rate in the Fangraphs era. 20 years old will need a few years in the minors to bring down that walk rate, but once he becomes efficient he can be TOR.
 

CSF77

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Cubs: Alexander Canario, OF (No. 12), High-A South Bend
Canario hasn’t been shy about showing off his power since he was traded to the Cubs organization and it was once again on display as he clubbed two homers, including a grand slam. Along with the two dingers, Canario’s six RBIs were a career-high as well. Just a couple weeks ago, Canario impressed by homering in four consecutive games. In 20 games with South Bend, Canario is slashing .274/.315/.536 with six homers and three steals.
 

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Jim Bowden has 2 Cubs players in his newly updated top 50 prospects ranking:


34. Brennen Davis, OF, Chicago Cubs

Age: 21
Bats: R Throws: R
Height: 6-4 Weight: 210
Scouting Grades: HIT: 50 PWR:60 RUN: 60 ARM: 55 FLD: 50

Davis put on a show in the Futures Game with two home runs, one to center field and one to left field. He was the game’s MVP. His swing looked long at times, but that really isn’t a concern because it’s similar to what Nelson Cruz showed at this age. Davis’ power is real, and he has above-average speed with a gliding-type action. He looks like an average defender with a plus arm

46. Pete Crow-Armstrong, CF, Chicago Cubs​

Age: 19
Bats: L Throws: L
Height: 6-0 Weight: 184
Scouting Grades: HIT: 55 PWR:40 RUN: 60 FLD: 60 ARM: 55

I was shocked at the deadline when I heard that the Mets had traded Crow-Armstrong to the Cubs for two months of Javier Báez. After trading Kelenic, another top outfield prospect, to the Mariners in the Robinson Canó-Edwin Díaz blockbuster in 2018, how in the world could the Mets make the same mistake twice? Well, they did, and I think it’s another deal that will haunt New York, this time to the Cubs’ benefit. I believe Crow-Armstrong will be the Cubs’ long-term solution in center field and at the leadoff spot in their lineup. He injured his non-throwing shoulder at Low-A St. Lucie after only 32 plate appearances this year and underwent season-ending surgery. The Cubs were satisfied with the medical reports and believe Crow-Armstrong, the No. 19 pick in the 2020 draft, will make a full recovery.
 

CSF77

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Jim Bowden has 2 Cubs players in his newly updated top 50 prospects ranking:


34. Brennen Davis, OF, Chicago Cubs

Age: 21
Bats: R Throws: R
Height: 6-4 Weight: 210
Scouting Grades: HIT: 50 PWR:60 RUN: 60 ARM: 55 FLD: 50

Davis put on a show in the Futures Game with two home runs, one to center field and one to left field. He was the game’s MVP. His swing looked long at times, but that really isn’t a concern because it’s similar to what Nelson Cruz showed at this age. Davis’ power is real, and he has above-average speed with a gliding-type action. He looks like an average defender with a plus arm

46. Pete Crow-Armstrong, CF, Chicago Cubs​

Age: 19
Bats: L Throws: L
Height: 6-0 Weight: 184
Scouting Grades: HIT: 55 PWR:40 RUN: 60 FLD: 60 ARM: 55

I was shocked at the deadline when I heard that the Mets had traded Crow-Armstrong to the Cubs for two months of Javier Báez. After trading Kelenic, another top outfield prospect, to the Mariners in the Robinson Canó-Edwin Díaz blockbuster in 2018, how in the world could the Mets make the same mistake twice? Well, they did, and I think it’s another deal that will haunt New York, this time to the Cubs’ benefit. I believe Crow-Armstrong will be the Cubs’ long-term solution in center field and at the leadoff spot in their lineup. He injured his non-throwing shoulder at Low-A St. Lucie after only 32 plate appearances this year and underwent season-ending surgery. The Cubs were satisfied with the medical reports and believe Crow-Armstrong, the No. 19 pick in the 2020 draft, will make a full recovery.

Crow-Armstrong I'm pretty stoked that they got him. I can see the Cubs running Ortega and Hermosillo in CF for 2 years and let Crow develop.

Davis has a big frame so you would expect him to grow into it more. That makes him more of a corner OF long term.

Now I tend to rank MLB.COM over the others in rankings. Baseball perspectives has solid insight and decent videos of prospects.

But I can see Crow going top 100 next year after he is injury free. Right now it is a bit of a jump.
 

knoxville7

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Jim Bowden has 2 Cubs players in his newly updated top 50 prospects ranking:


34. Brennen Davis, OF, Chicago Cubs

Age: 21
Bats: R Throws: R
Height: 6-4 Weight: 210
Scouting Grades: HIT: 50 PWR:60 RUN: 60 ARM: 55 FLD: 50

Davis put on a show in the Futures Game with two home runs, one to center field and one to left field. He was the game’s MVP. His swing looked long at times, but that really isn’t a concern because it’s similar to what Nelson Cruz showed at this age. Davis’ power is real, and he has above-average speed with a gliding-type action. He looks like an average defender with a plus arm

46. Pete Crow-Armstrong, CF, Chicago Cubs​

Age: 19
Bats: L Throws: L
Height: 6-0 Weight: 184
Scouting Grades: HIT: 55 PWR:40 RUN: 60 FLD: 60 ARM: 55

I was shocked at the deadline when I heard that the Mets had traded Crow-Armstrong to the Cubs for two months of Javier Báez. After trading Kelenic, another top outfield prospect, to the Mariners in the Robinson Canó-Edwin Díaz blockbuster in 2018, how in the world could the Mets make the same mistake twice? Well, they did, and I think it’s another deal that will haunt New York, this time to the Cubs’ benefit. I believe Crow-Armstrong will be the Cubs’ long-term solution in center field and at the leadoff spot in their lineup. He injured his non-throwing shoulder at Low-A St. Lucie after only 32 plate appearances this year and underwent season-ending surgery. The Cubs were satisfied with the medical reports and believe Crow-Armstrong, the No. 19 pick in the 2020 draft, will make a full recovery.

yet, according to some on here…the cubs got peanuts in return for their core
 

Diehardfan

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yet, according to some on here…the cubs got peanuts in return for their core
Numbers wise, they may of done alright. A lot of people, myself included, are not really up on the happenings in minor league baseball. But numbers, rankings....whatever....doesn't add up to a hill of beans until you see them live and playing in the majors. Call me old fashioned....but I've always hated metrics and placing numbers on players. I get why baseball does it, but I just don't like it or agree with it. To me, they have to pass the eye test....and even then, it's a crap shoot.
 

knoxville7

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Numbers wise, they may of done alright. A lot of people, myself included, are not really up on the happenings in minor league baseball. But numbers, rankings....whatever....doesn't add up to a hill of beans until you see them live and playing in the majors. Call me old fashioned....but I've always hated metrics and placing numbers on players. I get why baseball does it, but I just don't like it or agree with it. To me, they have to pass the eye test....and even then, it's a crap shoot.

oh I agree. Rankings are nice and all, but really doesn’t mean much other than maybe better “odds” of success

I remember going to an Iowa cubs/Memphis Redbirds game back when rizzo was at Iowa. I’ll never forget that game, the sound off his bat just sounded different than everyone else’s in that game. I knew right then we had something special. He went 3-4 with 2 doubles and a homer that game
 

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