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Cubs Minors Recap: Javy HRs twice; Bryant HRs; Edwards dominates in Cubs debut

Cubs Minors Recap: Javy HRs twice; Bryant HRs; Edwards dominates in Cubs debut

The Cubs power hitters were hitting their HRs while their power pitchers were shutting down the opposition from doing the same...

OKC 4 - Iowa 3

  • Sidearming RHP Chang-Yon Lim got himself one step closer to the major leagues with his promotion to AAA.  He doesn't seem to be slowing down as he moves up.  He pitched 2 more scoreless innings, walking none and striking out 2.
  • RHP Marcus Hatley pitched 2/3 of a scoreless inning to help bail out Nick Struck, who had another rough start.
  • Veteran Ty Wright had 3 doubles in 4 ABs, drove in a run and scored another

 

Birmingham 8 - Tennessee 5

  • LHP Eric Jokisch allowed 6 runs (5 earned) on 9 hits and 3 walks in just 5 innings.  Jokisch was on his way to another solid season but has had a rough go of it in July.  He's 0-3 with a 7.88 ERA since the all-star break and a 5.53 ERA in July.  The culprit has been control issues -- something that is normally a strength for Jokisch, but he has walked 16 batters in his 27.2 July innings.
  • PJ Francescon relieved Jokisch and allowed 1 run in 2 innings.  He walked one and struck out 2.  Marcos Mateo is also on the comeback trail and he pitched an inning and allowed one run on 2 hits.
  • Matt Szczur had a pair of singles and a run scored.  He's been in a bit of a slump of late, going 5 for his last 33 prior to this game.  He's still having a solid season at .280/.349/.368.
  • Arismendy Alcantara is in a slump.  He went o for 5 and is 3 for his last 32.  His average has plummeted to .268 and his OPS has fallen under .800 for the first time in recent memory (.794).
  • Javier Baez did it again.  2 more HRs giving him 10 at Tennessee.  That also makes it 7 HRs in his last 10 gamesHe did strike out 3 times and is hitting .232 but Baez's power production has been off the charts with the Smokies.  He's hitting .265/.327/.556 across the two levels this season with 27 HRs.  He's also walked 27 times (6.4%) and struck out 113 (26.6%).  Despite the HRs, his manager Buddy Bailey said he'd like to see him tone it down, something that Cubs coaches and the front office have said in the past.  Baez seems to forget he doesn't need to sell out to hit HRs.
  • Rubi Silva doubled and singled to raise his line to .287/.307/.499 with 13 HRs and 11 SBs.  He also used his strong arm to throw out 2 baserunners from the OF.
  • Christian Villanueva singled and walked twice.  His rate had been down entering the game (5.3%) so it's good to see him drawing a pair of walks.
  • John Andreoli went 2 for 4 to raise his average to .302.

Daytona 2 - Palm Beach 1

  • CJ Edwards made his Cubs debut as well as his debut at the advanced Class A level and didn't miss a beat.  He was absolutely dominant over 5 innings, allowing just one hit and one walk while striking out 8.   Edwards threw mostly fastballs to start the game (he was in the low to mid 90s), then mixed in his breaking ball and a few changeups as the game went along
  • Lendy Castillo had an uneven 3 innings but managed to make it through with the lead, allowing just one earned run despite walking 3 hitters.  He also struck out 3.
  • Austin Reed got the save by pitching a scoreless 9th.  Reed has 3 saves and just 2 walks in 22 innings since the AS break.  He has a 2.05 ERA in that time.
  • The D-Cubs got 2 hits each from Ben Carhart, Dustin Geiger, Taiwan Easterling, and Brad Zapenas.  Easterling has picked it up of late, hitting .306/.342/.417 in his last 10 games but is still hitting just .218 overall.

Kane County 6 - Peoria 3

  • So I was looking forward to seeing 3 hard-throwing young pitchers today: Edwards, Juan Paniagua, and Boise's Dillon Maples.  Paniagua was the only one who didn't dominate today.  In fact, he struggled mightily with his control again, walking 5 batters in just 2 innings.  He also allowed 3 runs on 3 hits.   Paniagua has had a sporadic work load over the last few years and it certainly has affected his command.  We may just have to look at this season as one where he just gets some work in and then hope it comes together for him in the offseason or next year -- though I'm hoping he finds his control and stuff at some point before the year ends.
  • LHP Nathan Dorris pitched 2 more scoreless innings.  He did not walk a batter and struck out 2.  Dorris got the win and improved to 5-3 with a 2.66 ERA.  Dorris has done a good job of missing bats (7.8 Ks/9 IP) while also inducing ground balls when hitters do make contact.  He has a big curveball and it remains to be seen if he can keep getting hitters to chase it at the upper levels but so far he's done a good job at this level.
  • Starling Peralta got the promotion to Kane County -- the level at which he excelled last season and had a solid 3 innings outing, though he did walk 3 batters.  He did not allow a run, however, surrendering just 2 hits while striking out 2.
  • Armando Rivero has been on fire.  After an extremely slow start, Rivero has been throwing the ball well after making a few adjustments to his delivery.  He's been clocked at 95-96 recently and struck out 5 batters in 2 innings for the second straight outing.  His ERA is still high at 6.06, but has not allowed a run in his last 4 outings - a stretch in which he's pitched 7.2 innings, walked 2 and struck out 14.  He has 24Ks in 16.1 innings this year.  Despite the less than stellar numbers overall, Rivero may get consideration for a promotion to Daytona before this year is out.
  • Guiseppe Pappacio gave Gioskar Amaya a much needed day off and responded with 2 hits and 2 runs scored.
  • Another day, another mult-hit day for Albert Almora.  He has played 55 games at Kane County and has 2 or more hits in 21 of them.  Incredible.
  • Another solid day for Dan Vogelbach, who singled and walked twice.
  • 3B Jeimer Candelario went 2 for 4 with a walk.  Candelario has hit .251/.337/.377 as a 19 year old at Kane County. Two numbers that bode well for him are his 29 doubles and 49 walks this season.
  • It does appear that Rock Shoulders is back.  After a doule and a single today, he's 9 for his last 21 and is hitting .260/.357/.479 overall with 16 HRs.  He also drove in 3 runs today.

Boise 3 - Spokane 1

  • Dillon Maples had his second straight dominant outing -- and the second one with no walks.  He went 5 innings and allowed just one run and struck out 5.   After a rough first outing, Maples has rebounded extremely well, walking 2 and striking out 15 in 13 innings.  He has a 1.13 ERA overall.  It really doesn't matter too much to me that Maples is doing this at such a lower level of competition because he has the stuff to miss bats at any level -- I'm excited that he's throwing strikes. Bad news for the hitters in this league.
  • Corbin Hoffner doesn't have the kind of stuff that Maples does but he's been no less dominant.  3 more scoreless innings brought his ERA down to just 1.21.   He allowed 1 hit, did not walk a batter and struck out 2.   Hoffner has 6 walks (1.81/9 IP)  and 27 strikeouts (8.18/9 IP) in 29.2 innings.
  • Tyler Bremer got his 4th save and did it in Marmol-esque style, allowing 2 hits and a walk but striking out the side.
  • I was told tha 2B Daniel Lockhart can really hit, has an ability to put the bat on the ball  --  and so far he's done just that this year.  He doesn't have much power right now and probably has a ceiling of double digit power at best, but he shows the abilty to hit for average and the athleticism and instincts to move around the infield.
  • Kris Bryant hit his 2nd HR, a 2-run shot then drove in a 3rd run with a sac fly.  It appears he has his timing back after the long layoff, so maybe we'll start to see a bit of what he can do on offense from here on out.
  • Yasiel Balaguert got on base 3 times with 2 singles and a walk.  Balaguert has improved his approach and results as a hitter this year, walking in just under 12%of his plate appearances while hitting .280.

AZ DBacks 12 - AZ Cubs 3 

  • Jose Arias got roughed up for the first time since starting his rehab stint, allowing 3 runs on 3 hits and 2 walks and struck out 2.  He has a 3.52 ERA so far as he tries to make his way back to Kane County.
  • Erick Leal gave up a lot of hits -- 7 in 4 innings, but managed to escape with just one run charged against him (2 runs were unearned).  He did not walk a batter and struck out 3.   Leal has a 3.46 ERA with 3 walks and 25 strikeouts in 26 innings this year.
  • Rehabbers Brett Jackson went 0 for 4 with 2 Ks while Greg Rohan went 1 for 4 with a strikeout.
  • Jesse Hodges doubled, drove in a run and scored another.
  • It appears that 9th round pick OF Charcer Burks is starting to find a rhythm at the plate.  He got two more singles and is 8 for his last 22 to raise his average to .263 on the year.

Cubs Affiliate Scoreboard/Box Scores

 

 

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  • fb_avatar

    Edwards also proved that his Twitter feed (CEdwardsSBS) is going to be must follow: idk man I was so nervous I had to pee and poop at the same time lol

  • In reply to Mike Moody:

    Haha! I may have to follow. I don't follow a lot of players normally, but may have to make an exception.

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    Absolute disaster of a year for Jackson. Re-tooled swing, still young enough to be a prospect, positive attitude, and... he's been plagued with injuries all year. Out of every Cubs prospect in the system, if you had to pick one who needed to avoid the injury bug coming into the year, it might have been Jackson (with Maples and Golden also up there).

  • In reply to Jason Pellettiere:

    Yeah. It's really too bad for him. He needed reps and he hasn't gotten enough this year.

  • Really encouraging to see our young A pitchers doing great today. Paniagua probably just needs about 6 months to get acclimated to a regular schedule. Once BJax is healthy enough, realistically how much time left does he have in a Cub uniform?

  • In reply to Buzz:

    It may have less to do with Jackson and more to do with roster space. If there is no reason to trade him and they have the room to carry him, they may as well keep him.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    Jackson and Vitter's seem to be defeated right now. Maybe they can regroup in winter ball. If not both will most likely be trying to do so with another organization in 2014.

  • John, not sure if you mentioned it and I missed it, but CJ Edwards' start was so dominating that the only hit he allowed was an infield hit and in his whole 5 inning start, he did not allow a ball to leave the infield.

  • In reply to Caps:

    I did not mention that but thanks.

  • In reply to Caps:

    He also struck out the first 7 batters he faced! Incredible

  • fb_avatar

    I love BJax...it is heartbreaking to seem him continue to struggle. I have a feeling that he will either break camp with the Cubs next year, or pushed off the roster. Unfortunately, the latter seems much more likely.

  • In reply to Ray A:

    Unfortunately it does seem like time is running out for him. He is going to need to show something soon.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to John Arguello:

    I'd put B. Jackson in the same boat as Olt at the moment. Both just need to get healthy and get some ABs, and maybe they can get some of that over the winter and come in to spring training a bit fresh, with a clean slate. Don't think I'd automatically pencil either in for starting with the team next year, barring an awesome spring. Olt still hasn't had a ton of ABs at the AAA level. It actually seemed like Jackson came out of the spring this year quite solid, but then started to get off-track with all the nagging injuries.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Michael Standaert:

    I don't think Olt and B-Jax are in the same boat. Olt apparently had a serious vision problem; while he likely won't hit for average, most scouts seem to think he has a future as a starter, just a low-average hitting one.

    B-Jax has been struggling for over a year now, with no physical issues. He probably is no longer a prospect, whatever boat that is.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Zonk:

    "most scouts seem to think he has a future as a starter, just a low-average hitting one." ... that is exactly what a lot of people were saying about Jackson last year, which wasn't a bad year (.817 ops at AAA), other than all the Ks.

    No physical issues? Jackson's been on and off the DL all year this year, at a time he was retooling his swing. I don't think we really have seen if the changes worked out or not. Would not give up on either, just think they both need a good solid DL-free stretch.

  • In reply to Michael Standaert:

    I see the similarities you're referring to placing them "in the same boat". i.e., high K-rates, lots of walks, low average, same age, etc... I think where Zonk is coming from is that Olt is a legit power hitting prospect who, prior to his eye injury this year was considered MLB ready - but blocked in the TX system. Whereas B-Jax was anything but MLB ready.

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    In reply to HoosierDaddy:

    Agreed, and while it's definitely true that B-Jax has missed development time due to injuries this year, I also think a swing re-tool is more of a desperation move to save a career than it is another stage in development. And before he was hurt, there were zero signs the new swing was doing anything other than sapping his power.

    The 40-man roster right now has alot of "droppable" players, but this offseason I would not be shocked if he was DFA'ed

  • In reply to Michael Standaert:

    I think it's different. Olt is one year and an odd eye injury away from being one of the top 50 prospects in the game. Jackson's stock has been falling now for 2 years running -- maybe even a bit longer than that.

  • fb_avatar

    Great debut for CJ and nice to see some hope for Maples as well.

    As for Javy, I'm just ... I'm at a loss. I don't like that he's striking out a lot again... However when the ball leaves the park seemingly every time the ball touches his bat... It's baffling.

    At the same time, his average is going up. :)

    Funny thing is: part of me agrees with the coaches that he should tone it down, and part of me thinks "tone it down? Are you watching this crap?".
    Why don't they just start selling tickets to his BP.

  • In reply to Giffmo:

    He was toning it down when he got hot at Daytona. The bat speed is unbelievable. He just doesn't have to swing that hard. I'm impressed by the HRs, of course, but one hit I still like to talk about was when he reached out and flicked a triple against the RF-CF wall in Peoria.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    Baez has the easiest opposite field power I have ever seen from a Cubs prospect. I have seen him do just like you said on several occasions where he flicks the bat out and ropes a ball off the wall or even over the fence.

    He has definitely been swinging too hard since he got to Tenn (at least in the handful I have watched on milbtv. He is pulling off and his head has been moving all over the place. Anyone will struggle to make contact with that approach. At Peoria last year he was not swinging out of his shoes like that unless he got ahead in the count or he was up with two outs and no one on base.

  • Corey Black is the exact same size as Travis Wood. 5'11", 175 lbs. and yet scouting report after scouting report says that he will likely be a reliever due to his size. I have no problem with Black pitching from the pen in the future, but I think that it's his overwhelming fastball and lack of secondary pitches that is more the reason for people thinking he'll wind up not starting.

    Did anyone expect Wood to be a reliever due to his stature? If so, he sure has proven them wrong...

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Quedub:

    It's that lefty/righty thing.Seemingly all short right handers are destined for relief. Tell that to Bob Gibson, Juan Marichal,and many others.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Quedub:

    Maybe the difference is having to rely on power fastball? Just a guess, but maybe high velocity is harder to sustain on a small frame, and that's the reason. In Wood's case, he doesn't rely on velocity, more command/break, so maybe that's the difference. Black's repertoire relies on 95-mph heat.

  • In reply to Zonk:

    Durability is part of it, but short pitchers that rely on their fastball (lefty or righty) tend to be homer prone because they struggle to get downward plane on the pitch. Wood has been very homer prone in his career until this season, but he has become much better at locating and the development of his cutter has also been a big help.

    So a guy like Black, who apparently struggles with his secondary pitches and relies heavily on the fastball, tend to get profiled as a reliever because it allows the best opportunity to play to their strength. They can air out their fastball without having to worry about stamina so they can miss as many bats as possible and in theory give up fewer home runs because the ball is put in play less.

  • In reply to mjvz:

    Wood commands both sides of the plate better than he has in the past. Before, he had little command on his arm side, forcing him to come in on righties and get lit up if he missed.

  • Starting pitching prospects, long the weak link in the Cubs system, are starting to look more like a strength of late.

    Alberto Cabrera - AA 9-3, 3.20, 1.25 WHIP, 8.1 H/9, 8.5 K/3.1 BB
    Kyle Hendricks - AA 10-3, 1.87, 1.04 WHIP, 7.5 H/9, 7.3 K/1.9 BB
    Pierce Johnson - A+ 8-6, 2.89, 1.28 WHIP, 8.6 H/9, 8.8 K/3.0 BB
    C.J. Edwards - A+ 8-2, 1.74, 0.99 WHIP, 5.8 H/9, 11.9 K/3.2 BB

    When you add in Jake Arrieta, Arodys Vizcaino and Justin Grimm, the Cubs finally have some depth at the position with 7 legit prospects in A+ or higher.

    The 2nd wave has some intriguing arms as well. Jose Paniagua, Dillon Maples, Paul Blackburn and Rob Zastryzny all have decent shots at being major league starters. Nine of those eleven players were acquired since Theo & Co. took over.

  • In reply to Quedub:

    I guess we could add Daytona starter Ivan Pineyro to the starting pitcher prospect list, though he's not the same quality as the others mentioned above.

    Ivan Pineyro - A+ 7-3, 3.14, 1.12 WHIP, 7.9 H/9, 8.2 K/2.2 BB.

  • In reply to Quedub:

    I would add Underwood as a possible starter too even though he is young, 19 yrs old.

  • In reply to Quedub:

    Edwards and Johnson the top prospects on that list -- and Arrieta may have the best stuff in the system and only one that can rival Samardzija in terms of pure stuff.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    Cabrera? I think that he is in the mix.

  • In reply to Quedub:

    If you're going to include Zastryzny in that second group, you could probably also include guys like Skulina, Underwood and Daury Torrez.

    Food for thought about Paniagua: he was rumored to hit 101 on the gun in AZ a month or so ago, and has a pretty good change, breaking stuff is a work-in-progress. He's about the same age as Gray and Appel, and his repertoire at this point is not THAT far off Gray's (although he clearly has command issues). He could end up being a steal at 1.1 mil--getting him is kind of like getting an extra 1st round pick.

  • What might be even more exciting is the growing list of potential impact relievers in the system. The much maligned Cubs bullpen could look very different next season. A couple of those names could come from the starters list from above. Vizcaino and Cabrera would add much needed depth behind current pen stalwarts Pedro Strop, James Russell and possible holdovers Blake Parker and Michael Bowden. Lefty, and baffling non-promotee, Zach Rosscup could also see some time with the big club in 2014. Hard-throwing reclamation projects Eduardo Sanchez and Henry Rodriguez will have late season auditions to be part of what could be a relieving corps deep in power arms.

    The 2nd wave of relievers is growing seemingly by the day. Corey Black, he of the upper-90s FB, is the latest addition. Starting candidate Juan Paniagua could wind up a power reliever. Flame-throwing Cuban Armando Rivera has been very effective of late, as has 2012 draftee and Kane County closer Michael Hamman. College draftees Sam Wilson, Trey Masek, Zach Godley, Michael Wagner and Scott Frazier have combined to pitch 48.2 innings giving up just 4 earned runs on 24 hits, walking 17 while striking out 52.

    And that's just to name a few...

  • Q, thanks for all the work that went into your excellent analysis above. These are exciting times.

  • fb_avatar

    John, can you refresh us on the contract status of Lim? I know he was a veteran releiver signed out of Japan while he was injured, so Cubs knew he would be a rehab project. We control him through next year, right?

    I can't remember, but also seems like he is ahead of rehab schedule

  • In reply to Zonk:

    Yes, he signed a 2yr $5MM deal. He had TJS in July 2012. Sidearm closer.... He seems to be ahead of schedule in his rehab.

    He signed a split MiLB/MLB deal. My understanding is once he is added to the 40 man roster, he can't come off without passing through waivers like all others. So basically, just flip him & Fuji's roles & roster spots for 2014.

  • In reply to Zonk:

    Not John ... but he's signed for 2 years on a two-way contract. Tommy John surgery.
    He's not pitched more than 5 innings at a level since coming back and seems like he could be added to the ML roster soon, though it means finding space on the 40 man roster.

  • In reply to Zonk:

    Sounds like Hoosier Daddy answered that for me pretty well ;) Thanks Hoosier. Money boy too.

  • fb_avatar

    I was at the Peoria vs KC game last night and the stadium gun is still broken but the scout I was sitting next to had Paniagua sitting in the low 90's and peaking at 96.

    Almora makes this game look easy. He had 2 hits but could have had a double to add on but the Chiefs center fielder made a great diving catch on a ball hit to left center that would have split the gap. His overall feel for the game is amazing, he was on second and scored on a single that found a gap through the infield, which that isn't a big deal at all but you usually see the guy busting his butt to score but Almora got such a great read on it that he was trotting home without even a thought from the OFer about throwing home.

  • In reply to Zachary Myers:

    Nice. Thanks Zachary. Good to see the arm strength is still there on Paniagua. Just that command needs work.

    Almora doees make it look easy and I think that play is a perfect description of why he consistently outplays his raw speed, which is just average.

  • Now that he appears to have his bearings, Armando Rivero could move quickly through the system no? At 25 it seems like he could be helping the big league club in the not too distant future.

  • In reply to Denim Dan:

    He should, shouldn't he?

    He may get a taste of Daytona this year. Regardless, he'll probably go to fall instructs & play winter ball in Venezuela/D.R. and then we'll see them move him to a more age & competition appropriate league out of ST.

    When we signed him in March, Ben Badler @ BA said he was advanced enough for AA. I think the Cubs have just been conservative with him but now that's getting his legs under him he should move quickly.

  • A little off topic here but I just read that the Orioles are willing to trade Bundy. You think that is a good starting point for Shark?

  • In reply to Holy Cattle:

    I would be suspect... Why they would trade one of their blue chips when his value has taken a recent hit?

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to HoosierDaddy:

    Yeah, it's fascinating that the story is they're willing to trade Bundy, not that they're willing to trade Gausman or Bundy.

  • Wish Baez would make more contact. The power is awesome but if he is striking out that much at AA, it doesn't bode well for the future.

  • John...what's the next step for Baez? Does he start 2014 in Tennessee? Is there a remote chance he makes the Cubs out of spring training?

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to jorel1114:

    NO

  • In reply to jorel1114:

    No, he's not ready. Nothing to gain by rushing him.

    Even if they thought he was ready, he isn't on the 40 man roster yet and they will have some tough decisions about who to drop as it is....

  • In reply to HoosierDaddy:

    On the minor league level (non active) of the 40 man roster:

    I think McNutt is dropped for sure.

    B. Jackson, B. Raley, D. Sappelt and J. Vitters are on the bubble.

    A. Alcantara, G. Amaya, Juan Carlos Paniagua are added.

    Other possible additions: Jae-Hoon Ha, Z. Rosscup, and W. Contreras

  • In reply to SouthsideB:

    Amaya will not be added. Neither will Contreras.

    Alcantara, Paniagua, Rosscup and Ha are the only minor leaguers that will need to be added in the offseason. And as for who to drop, any one from the following list is susceptible. They will be fine for roster spots this offseason. 2014 offseason will be another matter. That is when the minor league depth will start to arrive and create tough decisions.

    All of these guys could be dropped/traded in certain scenarios. And that doesn't even account for guys like DeJesus/Sweeney/Schierholtz that could be moved as well:

    Baker
    Bogusevic
    Borbon
    Bowden
    Dolis
    Gillespie
    Gregg
    Guerrier
    Jackson
    McNutt
    Putnam
    Ransom
    Sappelt
    Vitters

  • In reply to mjvz:

    Oh and Lim was need to be added as well, but that appears likely to happen before this season ends.

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    In reply to mjvz:

    Alcantara is the only lock to be added to 40-man ahead of the Rule 5 draft, IMO. Everyone else is either too far from the majors (like Amaya), or not really valuable enough to protect (like Ha).

    MLB needs to rule on Paniagua; he needs to be added to 40-man only if you count his service time from when he was somebody else in the D-Backs system, before that contract was voided. Kind of a grey area.

  • In reply to Zonk:

    I can't see any scenario where they don't add Rosscup. He would get picked in the rule 5 in a heartbeat. Ha is debatable, But I still think he gets added.

    I don't see how the Paniagua ruling wouldn't go against him. He pitched for the D'Backs org. If his contract had been voided before he suited up, maybe, but I have to think that time is going to matter.

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    In reply to jorel1114:

    Probably no way he breaks camp with the big club. If he cuts down the K's, which he did at Daytona, and has a torrid first half, he may play his way into the discussion for a second half/late season call-up. That's a lot of ifs, though...

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Matt McNear:

    We can't forget contract/FA status figuring in. Cubs figure to move his service time back enough to gain another year of club control, and/or avoid an extra arb year. Clubs are doing this routinely now for top prospects, and it makes sense in the long run.

    Just another reason not to rush anybody

  • In reply to Zonk:

    Correct. Baez can start in AA or AAA next year. He wouldn't be called up until June at the earliiest even if he comes out crushing the ball next year. They wouldn't be able to use the arbitrary number of AB excuse they used for Rizzo, but they could certainly justify keeping him down until after the super two timeframe passes. While I am of the opinion he could hold his own in the majors straight out of camp next year, he and the team are better off keeping him down until at least midseason next year to try get him to tone down his swing more consistently and also perhaps to figure out what position they want him play if they decide to move him off SS.

  • In reply to jorel1114:

    I think he starts 2014 in AA unless he shows an improvement in his approach. Has done a good job so far, but needs to take next step. More offspeed/command types in AAA that can exploit him.

  • Detroit trades for Houston's closer Jose Veras.

    Houston receives a OF from single A and a PTBNL.

    http://www.mlbtraderumors.com/

    Similar numbers to Gregg, but he has 1 more year of control and he's younger.

    Looks like all we will get for Gregg will be a single A player. I was hoping for a higher level player.

  • In reply to SouthsideB:

    Veras is a similar commodity to Greg in that he has a spotty past, but played beyond expectations (some regression is expected) this year. He has a cheap option for 2014 though, so theoretically his value is higher than Gregs.

    Not sure the Tigers were ever really in on Greg so this may be a moot point and could potentially help us since there's one less reliever out there....

    That kid Vasquez was a top 10 organizational prospect for Detroit entering the season but he's struggled at Low A. He was all about projection and his Bat. He's only 19 so HOU must like what they see.

    Realistically, Greg may be a throw in with DDJ/Schierholtz, etc (if they are moved) to get a legit prospect Theo/Jed are targeting. If not a "B" level prospect for Greg is all we can really hope for straight up for Greg. Which I'd rather them do so we can see some others audition for the closer role.

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    In reply to HoosierDaddy:

    You are right that Veras has more value than Gregg: He's younger, controlled an extra year, was better last year, and has been better this year. He also had more than 1 K in his last 7 outings, unlike Mr. Gregg.

    Houston didn't get much; if we can expect alot less, maybe we shouldn't even bother. If I was buying bullpen help, Gregg would not be my first or second choice either.

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    In reply to Zonk:

    Good points. Hoping for anything for Gregg is a tough emotional investment. I think there are a number of relievers available that teams would be more interested in. I'm sure if he doesn't get moved the Cubs will immediately pass him through waivers and see if anybody bites. Even then, the return will be minimal. A lot of people posting say to add him to other potential trades but I think that minimizes a return more than it maximizes any potential return.

  • FYI: looks like the Cubs have released a few minor league pitchers, Larry Suarez, Ben Wells, & Austin Kirk.

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    In reply to TobaccopouchinIvy:

    Ben Wells would be interesting.....he was promising before arm injury sapped his fastball velocity.

    This is hopefully the process of clearing out fingey non-prospects for real prospects like Edwards, Black, etc.

  • In reply to Zonk:

    I think Wells was a 40 man decision (read my post below). Even though he's been a few ticks slower, he's still been effective.

  • In reply to TobaccopouchinIvy:

    I'm not seeing this reported anywhere yet....

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    In reply to HoosierDaddy:

    I haven't either, where is the source?

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    In reply to TobaccopouchinIvy:

    Another blog with very reliable reporting on minor league transactions only reports Suarez being released, NOT Wells or Kirk. They were both placed on 7-day DL though. Maybe that's the confusion.

    But only Larry Suarez is reported as released. He was supposed to have a good FB, but never had any command.

  • In reply to Zonk:

    That makes far more sense.

  • In reply to TobaccopouchinIvy:

    Can't find any confirmation of these transactions. Source? Link?

  • Whats the scouting report on Chang-Yon Lim ?

  • In reply to Rbirby:

    http://www.chicagonow.com/cubs-den/2012/12/video-on-chang-yong-lim/

  • Not sure about the others, but I remember that when Hendry drafted Wells in 2010 out of HS, they added a clause to Wells contract that he would be added to the 40 man roster by 9/1/13. Kind of peculiar.

    Not 100% certain, but I'd think that any team that makes a claim for him would have to do the same. If he clears waivers, then we can sign him to a normal deal. John - am I right here?

    Kirk hasn't really set the world on fire at TEN. Seems odd that they would just release a 23yo AA starting pitcher though.

    Suarez is a non prospect so....

  • In reply to HoosierDaddy:

    Ugh, if that was in Wells contract that was a terrible decision by Hendry. It probably won't end up hurting us because as you said, I doubt a team would add him to their 40 man yet, so we may be able to keep him.

    Kirk was never more than a relief prospect in my opinion. But he does have a decent breaking ball. I'm surprised they gave up on him so early as lefties usually get lots of time, but he isn't really a loss. He was always a long shot.

    Like you said, Saurez was not a prospect (at least for the past 3 or 4 years)

  • I'm hoping these releases allow some of the college arms from Boise to get a few starts in Kane or Daytona. I know they all have innings limits, but would like to see how they do going thru the order more than once.

  • Man, did CJ Edwards look nasty. Throws hard, has good movement on his pitches and doesn't seem like he walks many. Heres to hoping he stays a starter.

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    Tigers trade for Veras, Braves trade for Scott Downs, Rays apparently on the verge of trading for Jesse Crain.

    Makes me think the price on Russell is so obscene that he isn't going anywhere. I can't say that upsets me a whole lot -- a bullpen built on Strop/Russell/Parker next season could be very good, indeed.

  • In reply to Mike Moody:

    The only guys not under contract for next season that should be moved are Navarro & Gregg, so unless a team is willing to cough up some decent pitching prospects for Russell, Nate, et. al. the Cubs will be patient in dealing those guys. I'd like to see a blockbuster with the Pirates-- they should be aggressive buyers this year and have the pitching prospects we want. If the Cards get Peavy and/or Ramirez as has been reported then Pittsburgh will need a closer and some offense ASAP.

  • Can anyone give me a reason why Kyle Hendricks hasn't earned a promotion? All the numbers are excellent.

  • In reply to Mitchener:

    Logjam @ Iowa? I agree that Hendricks needs to be sent up, along with Almora to Daytona.

  • In reply to Paulson:

    Pretty much. Some of the logjam will get cleared in the coming weeks as a couple guys get promoted to take Gregg's spot and maybe Russell's. And there may be another vet or two that gets dealt/released or sold like Moscoso was last week.

    At this point I would rather just have Almora play every day in KC than get rained out twice a week in Daytona. Either way I think he can start in Tenn next year if they want him to.

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    In reply to Mitchener:

    It's a good question, the FO can read a stat sheet, so there has to be a reason. It could be lack of rotation slots.

    The Iowa starting 5 right now is Arrieta, Grimm, Loux, Raley, and Struck. Struck would seem like a candidate for demotion right now. The other 4 I don't see going anywhere at the moment.

    The fact that we dealt Moscoso away tells me we are a little crunched for rotation slots right now there, but still not sure why Struck isn't being sent down to AA

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    In reply to Zonk:

    PS: I realized Arrieta is starting DH on Tue, but that's probably temporary.

  • In reply to Zonk:

    I think there is an outside chance he keeps the rotation spot and Villanueva is bumped back to the bullpen. Arrieta is the priority. if they think he is ready, they won't let Villanueva stand in his way.

  • In reply to Zonk:

    Struck will probably get released in the offseason or become an organizational filler. I have trouble believing he is stopping Hendricks from being promoted

  • In reply to NathanE:

    Negrin and Struck are the two most likely to go from the Iowa staff. Either could be released or kept and demoted if they feel they bring good professionalism and that they can function as a good examples for younger guys as org arms. Lim probably takes Gregg's spot in Chicago. Its not like the are stalling Hendricks development right now. I'm sure he will be up in Iowa in August. A few more starts in Tenn isn't going to kill him.

  • In reply to Zonk:

    The fact that we can sign someone off the scrap heap, re-establish them as a legit SP at the AAA level and have a team trade for him so that they can add him to their 25 man roster and get a few starts out of him says volumes about where our pitching depth is VS. last year.

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