Your 2011 AZIL Cubs!

Here is the 2011 Cubs Arizona Instructional League roster.

The first AZIL league game for the Cubs will be this Friday at Fitch Park versus the Brewers.

The 47-man AZIL Cubs roster features eight players who will be making their professional debut, including 2011 11th round draft pick ($1.275M bonus) OF Shawon Dunston, Jr (Valley Christian HS - San Jose CA), 14th round draft pick ($2.5M bonus) RHP Dillon Maples (Pinecrest HS - Southern Pines, NC), 15th round draft pick catcher Justin Marra (Canadian Junior National Team), and 35th round draft pick RHP Ian Dickson (Lafayette College), recently-signed NDFA RHP David Henrie (Trinidad State JC), 16-year old switch-hitting $1.6M Venezuelan bonus baby catcher Mark Malave, 16-year old $1.1M Dominican bonus baby SS Luis Acosta, and 16-year old Curacao LHP Christopher Pieters ($350K bonus).

Another seven players will be making their U. S. debut, including DSL Cubs RHPs Jose Arias and Alexander Santana, 3B Jeimer Candelario, SS Carlos Penalver, and outfielders Jeffrey Baez and Eliecer Bonne (a 24-year old Cuban defector who signed with the Cubs this past spring), and 17-year old Italian catcher Alberto Mineo (who hit 270/333/338 in 31 games played at the MLB Australian Academy Program this past summer).

Besides Dunston, Jr, Maples, Marra, and Dickson, 13 other 2011 Cubs draft picks at Instructs include SS Javier Baez (1st round), 1B Dan Vogelbach (2nd round), 2B-OF Zeke DeVoss (3rd round), RHP Tony Zych (4th round), RHP Tayler Scott (5th round), C Neftali Rosario (6th round), OF Garrett Schlecht (9th round), INF Danny Lockhart (10th round), C Rafael Lopez (16th round), LHP Andrew McKirahan (21st round), 1B Rock Shoulders (25th round), RHP Michael Jensen (26th round), and OF Taiwan Easterling (27th round).

In addition, 25-year old 6’4 245# OF Matt Spencer is being converted to a LHP. Spencer was a two-way player (LHP-OF) in HS and in his first two years at the University of North Carolina (before transferring to Arizona State), so he is not a stranger to the mound.

Spencer was one of three players acquired from the Oakland A’s in the Jake Fox deal a couple of years ago, and he played 1B and all three OF spots for Tennessee and Iowa in 2011, hitting a combined 246/319/419 with 14 HR & 70 RBI between AA and AAA (but only 188/260/246 in 27 games at AAA). He also got into two blow-outs as a pitcher (2.0 IP, 1 H, 1 R 3 BB, 1 K).


Dave Bialas

Mark Johnson

Tom Beyers
Franklin Font
Jason Dubois
Brian Harper
Casey Kopitzke
Dennis Lewallyn
Carmelo Martinez
Tom Pratt
David Rosario
Lee Tinsley
Desi Wilson


* bats or throws left
# bats both

Jose Arias
* Kyler Burke (ex-OF)
* Frank Del Valle
Ian Dickson
Dustin Fitzgerald
David Henrie
Michael Jensen
Luis Liria
Dillon Maples
* Andrew McKirahan
Tarlandus Mitchell
Amaury Paulino
Felix Pena
Starling Peralta
* Christopher Pieters
Austin Reed
Jose Rosario
* Zac Rosscup
Alexander Santana
Tayler Scott
* Matt Spencer (ex-OF)
Larry Suarez
Charles Thomas (ex-3B)
Tony Zych

Yaniel Cabezas
# Micah Gibbs
* Rafael Lopez
# Mark Malave
* Justin Marra
* Alberto Mineo
Neftali Rosario

Luis Acosta
Javier Baez
# Jeimer Candelario
# Zeke DeVoss
Dustin Geiger
* Danny Lockhart
Carlos Penalver
# Rock Shoulders
* Rubi Silva
* Dan Vogelbach

Jeffrey Baez
Eliecer Bonne
* Shawon Dunston, Jr
Taiwan Easterling
Reggie Golden
* Garrett Schlecht


complete game for Garza puts him at 191 IP, another complete game win versus Padres next week and he'll hit 200 and double digit wins. ERA is at 3.35 on the season.

If it happens to manage a CG shutout, he'd get his ERA down to 3.20 I believe.

Dempster at 190.2 IP with 2 starts to go, so he should top 200 with a bit to spare.

hoping to announce a new CBA before end of World Series, draft compensation and reverse luxury tax seem to be the key points to still hash out.

Finally, we conducted a little unofficial, unscientific poll of several executives this week, asking where they thought the marquee free-agent hitters on this market will wind up. The envelopes, please:

Pujols to St. Louis, Fielder to Nationals, Reyes to Giants

If that's the case, I hope we make a nice trade offer for Mike Morse. No idea why the Nats would want to spend that big on Fielder when they already have a solid 1B. I think they would be more likely to splurge on C.J. Wilson, if anything.

they also have LaRoche back next year, don't they?

not that either should keep them from pursuing Fielder or Pujols.

Morse is having a nice year at age 29, but can move to LF or be a trade chip for pitching they'll still desperately need. Wouldn't count on Harper starting the season with the team.

Zambrano or LaRoche?

Another odd thing about the Werth signing. What posistion is Harper going to play?

If they did sign Pujols or Fielder, and they really feel Harper is ready, I could see them having him start the season in the majors, because the Fielder/Pujols hype may distract a little from the glare on Harper. Of course, Harper would probably cry about it... he's got to be the least likeable minor league prospect since that kid we drafted who tried to kill someone in the on deck circle.

since that kid we drafted who tried to kill someone in the on deck circle.
Beanball Ben Christensen and Anthony Molina

here's an article on the 10 yr aftermath...

“I have three kids that are awesome, and I’m divorced, which is also awesome,’’ he said


Thanks a ton, AZPhil! I've been craving some minor league news ever since the season ended. This AZIL squad easily has me more excited than any other one I've followed. So much all-star potential. It gives a guy a reason to dream.

Thanks Phil. Been looking forward to this info.

Az Phil:

The AZIL squad has a ton of interesting pitchers (well, of the 24 not all can be interesting) , can you break down your expectations for those that deserve the most attention?

The leaves turn and AZ Phil takes over TCR.

I am excited for reports on the young Latinos. Keep the reports coming Az. Phil!

I am surprized that Ben Wells isnt at Fitch.

Phil - Have the Cubs had 16 year olds in the instructional league before. It sounds unusual to me.

Submitted by DavidP on Thu, 09/22/2011 - 1:06pm.
Phil - Have the Cubs had 16 year olds in the instructional league before. It sounds unusual to me.


DAVID P: I don't recall ever seeing 16-year olds at Instructs before. I believe this is the first time.

Where is Annie Savoy when you need her?

She's put on a few miles since her Nuke LaLoosh days. And she "retired" from banging minor leaguers at the end of the movie.

Good group of young exciting players. Little surprised not to see a guy like Ackerman on the list.

Recent comments

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  • Unbeleivable Dodgers:
    I just noticed the Dodger's payroll today. It is just absurd. $300,000,000+!!
    Here is where just some of their money is for 2015:

    Some "Highlights"
    Carl Crawford $20MM
    Brandon McCarthy $17MM
    Bronson Arroyo $3.5MM
    Darwin B $2.2MM
    Dan Haren $10MM
    Matt Kemp $18MM
    Brian Wilson $10MM
    Ryan Webb $2.2MM
    Dee Gordon $2.5MM

  • So I think tomorrow will be the most important test of how far we can go. We can win it all with two pitchers since Arietta has shown he can carry over his success to the post season. If Lester can be dominant also then I think we can go far no matter how Hendricks or Hammel do.


    And in terms of pitching just went through to see how we could maximize Lester and Arietta and came up with this (Lester would be going on 4 days rest three times and Arietta twice):

  • i still can't believe that crawford contract (7/142). all that loot and years for a LF'r who's entire hitting game revolves around his legs and line-drive power. those triples that raised his value are deceptive as hell to his true power, but it helped him get paid.

    there's also pause about a guy who's ob% is almost totally driven by hits rather than walks. BOS got lucky unloading that crap deal.

  • I think the Cubs take Berry and Soler off playoff roster and add Hammel & Ramirez. Believe Maddon will find Denorfia & Jackson defense too hard to lose.

  • O & B: I like the one-game Wild Card heart attack game, but I'd actually like to see a best two-out-of-three LDS played in the home parks of the two division winners with the best records, and then the LCS as a best two-out-of-three in the home park of the division winner left standing with the best record, and then let's get to the World Series already. 

  • I...don't know. If chanting would help the Cubs beat the Cardinals in the next series or ultimately the World Series I think I'd be ok with it lol. I'm not supportive of saying insulting things to opposing fans or throwing things but loud noise and chanting seems appropriate to me.

    I also grew up in France though and that kind of thing is par for the course at soccer and rugby matches and I love it. I find crowds too passive here.

  • Er, they won the first one. My bad. Carry on.

  • With last night's win in Pittsburgh, the Cubs have tied the Pirates with 98 wins, and are only 2-1/2 games behind the Cardinals. No reason why the Cubs can't finish the post-season with the best winning percentage in baseball (regular season & post-season combined). 

  • BOB: I doubt very much that Matt Szczur will be on the Cubs LDS roster.

    If he wasn't on the Wild Card roster (when the Cubs went with 15 position players), he won't be on the LDS roster (when the Cubs will go with 13 or 14 position players).

    As it is, at least one of the three RH hitting outfielders who were on the Cubs WC roster (Denorfia, Jackson, and Soler) could get bumped off the LDS roster (probably Soler).

  • I want my baseball team to win by playing better baseball. I don't want umps, fields, or fans to have anything to do with it.

  • Just with the chanting thing it worked to rattle Cueto last year where he dropped a ball and gave up a HR next pitch so you can't really hate on the fans for trying it again in this important of a game.

    Arietta though.

  • I felt the same way, too, but...

    I was very disappointed with Pittsburgh fans. At Wrigley a few weeks ago, they were very obnoxious guests, the cockiness on Twitter, and what's the deal with chanting Arrieta's name during the game? Very bush league. Add that up with Rodriguez's poor sportsmanship and you quickly have a team that you don't mind beating 4-0 in a do or die game.

  • Absolutely-It was tense. And when the Pirates couldn't push any runs across, you could see the frustration boil over.

  • I meant December.