Baseball Prospectus Top 11 Cubs' Prospects
- Josh Vitters
- Starlin Castro
- Hak-Ju Lee
- Brett Jackson
- Andrew Cashner
- Jay Jackson
- Chris Carpenter
- Chris Archer
- Kyler Burke
- Ryan Flaherty
- John Gaub
Most prospecters seemed to have soured a bit on Vitters, but Goldstein gives him a break for his disappointing season in Hi-A due to a hand injury, citing much better numbers against better pitchers in the AFL. Goldstein says his defense has improved and then gushes about his swing.
Vitters' swing is among the sweetest in the minors. It's smooth, powerful, gets into the hitting zone quickly, and stays there a long time. His plate coverage is off the charts, and he's as comfortable turning on an inside fastball as he is driving an outside breaking ball to the opposite field.
Goldstein also notes that Vitters plate coverage can also be a negative as he doesn't draw a lot of walks.
And although he puts Castro as a 5-star prospect, he has these words of warning.
While most believe that Castro will be an above-average big-league shortstop, he doesn't have the tools for true impact potential. His line-drive swing and contact-oriented approach offers little power or projection for much more, while he's also a free swinger who rarely walks. Several scouts noted below-average running times to first base, and his range is affected by it, possibly leading to a move to second base down the road.
I'm not going to reproduce all of BP's premium content, but here are some other highlights.
- Folks within the organization see a Hak-Ju Lee at short, Castro at 2b infield with them batting 1-2 in the lineup.
- Raves about Brett Jackson's 5-tools being good enough to be a early first round pick, but cautions about his swing-and-miss hitting.
- Sees Cashner, Jackson, Carpenter all on the same path to either middle of the road starter or more dominant late-inning bullpen pieces.
- Seems everyone sees Flaherty as a second basemen.
- Gaub relies more on deception than stuff.
Otherwise, a big step forward for the organization and says they'll move way up in the overall rankings.
ERIC S: Best outing I've ever seen from Manny Rondon, and I've seen most of his outings since the Cubs got him from the Angels.
M. Rondon is competing with six others (Dylan Cease, Bryan Hudson, Jose Paulino, Pedro Silverio, Jesus Castillo, and Erling Moreno) for a starting slot at Eugene, and (as you can probably tell from the EXST box scores) the competition has gotten fierce over the last couple of weeks, With the exception of Moreno, the Eugene SP candidates have upped their game lately, and M. Rondon's outing yesterday was especially impressive/dominating.
E-MAN: Pierce Johnsion was mixing a 92-94 MPH fastball with a plus-change-up AND curve, and he threw strike-after-strike-after-strike with all three of his pitches. I believe that was the best command and pitch-efficiency I've ever seen from Johnson, who often pitches from behind in the count and issues too many walks.
Of course now he has to avoid a recurrence of the lat strain (whch he has had previously in his career) as well as all of the other miscellaneous physical problems he's had over the last three years (hamstring, quad, back, etc).
AZ Phil, has Nathan showed up in Mesa yet? Thanks.
Eickhoff looks like a good young pitcher. Lets steal him!
Manny Rondon faced 13 batters ... and got 10 to K. Not a bad day's work.
Wondering if has potential to become a #3 pitcher? His current stats certainly support it.
That doesn't count b/c CRUNCH didn't see it on his 60" HDTV 5 times in replay.
I have seen many players "bail out" when the ball looked like it was gonna hit them.
a 60" TV with slow-motion replay and multiple looks on that replay helps...a lot...
Bryant and I believe Zobrist both did that too.
soler vs inside breaking balls is scary.
j.urias optioned back to AAA...guess we wont be seeing him in the LAD series.