Cubs prospects Almora, Soler, Bryant, and Darvill drive in 11 as Mesa dismantles Glendale

Cubs prospects Almora, Soler, Bryant, and Darvill drive in 11 as Mesa dismantles Glendale
Albert Almora

Well, if the future Cubs are going to hit like this they can re-hire Dale Sveum and it isn't going to matter. The Mesa Solar Sox started 3 Cubs today and each drove in 3 runs and just for good measure, Wes Darvill got into the game late and hit a 2 run bomb as well.

Recap

  • Albert Almora is one of those guys you can probably roll out of bed at 3 in the morning, putting him in the batters box and he'll line a single up the middle.  Despite missing much of the 2nd half, Almora picked up right where he left off, going 4 for 4 with a double, a HR and 3 RBI.  He also scored 3 runs. Ohhh...and he also made a diving catch in CF.  I had Almora as my top Cubs prospect mid season because I believe he is both the Cubs best pure hitter and the best defender in the organization at a premium position.  He has the potential for 2 plus to plus-plus tools with all the other tools being average or better, including a strong, accurate arm that generated 9 assists despite missing more than half the season.
  • Jorge Soler only had one hit but it was a bases clearing double.  He went 1 for 5, scored 2 and drove in 3 runs.  He struck out once.
  • Kris Bryant had his second connsecutive big day and went 2 for 3 with a walk, including a 3-run HR.  He has 5 hits in two games and is hitting .556 (5 for 9).  Not to quibble but he did make an error and struck out once.
  • Utility infield prospect Wes Darvill came in late and got an AB and promptly hit a 2 run HR, making it 11 RBI for Cubs prospects on the day.  Darvill, if you remember, was drafted in the 5th round as a 17 year old spindly SS with good athleticism but not a ton of strength.  He has a good approach at the plate and works counts, though he isn't enough of a threat at the plate yet to turn them into walks.  He was one of the Cubs put through their strength training program last offseason and put on 30 pounds of muscle.  One person inside the Cubs organization told me he is a sleeper to watch for next season.

Comments

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  • Can it be.........the light at the end of the tunnel is not another train?? Kinda bummed to think about managerial situation so this helps a bit.

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    In reply to Hubbs16:

    I think it's a safe bet that the phrase, "Say it ain't so Joe. Say it ain't so," been uttered in Chicago this much since 1919.

  • Hopefully these guys have strong performances that would help them start the season in the next level next year... As for guys like Lendy Castillo and Dallas Beeler, I think it's more about knowing if they deserve to be protected from the Rule 5 draft.

  • John,

    Wasn't Darvill mentioned as a potential catcher conversion project? If so, how/when does that project begin?

  • This story is about 1 Billion times more important to the Cubs future than anything having to do with Joe Girardi.

  • In reply to JamesInFLA:

    We are finally going to leave the "Dark ages"

  • In reply to emartinezjr:

    Lordy I hope so.

  • In reply to JamesInFLA:

    I beleive I said something yesterday about putting together a video of the top prospects like Almora, Baez and Bryant with the caption"this is your future" for any prospective candidate. These guys look like they will make someone look good.

  • Let's hope Darvill becomes more than a utility player and continues to blossom. It is always great when you have a few unexpected surprises become strong major leaguers along with the ones you expect. Then you have something special.

  • Comment seen in Noth Side Baseball thread:

    Ha, my buddy overheard Theo talking to Carrie Muskat

    "Maybe we should have invited Girardi to this game"

  • The Future is bright for the Cubs.

    Barring injury I see the following Best Case Scenarios for the Top prospects:

    Javier Baez begins 2014 in AAA -->
    Promoted to MLB in July/ Sept. call-up

    Arsimendy Alcantara begins 2014 in AAA
    Promoted to MLB in July/ Sept. call-up

    Kris Bryant begins 2014 in AA -->
    Promoted to AAA in June --> Sept. call-up

    Jorge Soler begins 2014 in AA -->
    Promoted to AAA in June --> Sept. call-up

    Albert Almora begins 2014 in A+ Daytona -->
    Promoted to AA in July --> Starts 2015 in AAA

    Imo, the cavalry could be arriving a lot sooner than people expect.

  • In reply to Ghost Dawg:

    I think you are maybe half a year too optimistic for most of these guys Dawg,...

    But man that would be fantastic if you were more right than wrong.

  • In reply to Ghost Dawg:

    Dawg... I actually think there's a possibility, however small, that Barney could be a non-tender... with Alcantara being called up sooner rather than later.

    I've suggested to John that Bryant is likely to be the first of the group to be on the ML roster... but Alcantara might surprise.

  • In reply to Ghost Dawg:

    If these guys are September call ups then those empty seats will look like paying customers.This should be the start of a resurgent Cubs team,it has to be better than the past two seasons.

  • In reply to Ghost Dawg:

    Dawg, I did notice you mentioned "Best Case Scenarios" and I agree and have felt so for some time. It's not Cub Koolaid I'm drinking, just being optimistic. Regardless, I believe the roster change from April 2013 to September 2013, which was massive, will be even more so in 2014 and will include several of your mentioned names come August/September. Again, being optimistic, I feel more of our top prospects will make it than normally do because of the thoughtful and consistent developmental program that has been installed within the Cubs minor league system. Any washout will be because of injury problems (fingers crossed) and non-execution of talent..

  • In reply to Ghost Dawg:

    Easy now! It's just one game and as we have seen with Castro talent is just part of the equation.

  • In reply to Ghost Dawg:

    if Baez rakes in AAA, he will be up around the all-star break. Alcantara I think will be in AAA the entire year, unless enough roster space is created for him. I personally think Soler, Bryant Almora are more likely 2015 arrivals, along with possible other names like Vogelbomb and CJ Edwards and P Johnson,

  • John I have an interesting question.
    In the 2011 draft, the cubs got Almora at 9 and the Cardinals got Wacha at 19. You say that Almora could be #1 in the cubs system for his pure hitting ability. Knowing what we know now about both players, in a perfect world, who would you rather have Almora or Wacha.

  • In reply to Mwils85:

    Sorry meant 2012 draft

  • In reply to Mwils85:

    It's a tough question. I think the Cubs made the right choice with Almora at #7 given the situation, but there was no way Wacha should have fallen to 19. What about Pittsburgh, who passed him up to pick an unsignable Mark Appel? Or the Padres who too Fried, who is a nice prospect but the Padres will be thrilled if he becomes as good as Wacha. I think there are a lot more teams with more regrettable picks than the Cubs. Almora is a top 25 prospect, it's hard to argue with that pick.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    I think Almora was taken at #6 and I agree he was the right choice.

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    In reply to John Arguello:

    I think and agree Almora will turn out to be a solid player, but I think I would be in the majority and would rather have Wacha penciled into our #2-3 spot for the next decade.

    Yes, position players are more important esp at a premium defensive position, but Wacha is impressive to me at least. He passes the eye test.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    Picking pitchers in the draft is like picking which leaf falls off the tree first in the fall.

    But somehow the Cardinals do just that. A discussion of how they do that is worthy material for an article.

  • In reply to Tinker Evers Chance:

    I agree, that would make for quite an article!

  • In reply to Tinker Evers Chance:

    Although I certainly understand what you (TEC) and CGunz (below) is trying to say, yet, I could read a cardinal blog or STLToday and get as much of that I could stand. Comment on their success'; certainly. Open up a forum/discussion loop on that? As Average Samaritan and kissitgoodbye says (below) about an ozzie hire? Vomit inducing. IJSn.

  • I am wish I could be in AZ this fall. But I will be in Tennessee in May so it. Should be fun.

  • Hannemann sighting at instructs today, according to Az Phil.

  • In reply to Eldrad:

    I hope he can stay healthy. I think this guy is a sleeper.

  • Excerpt about Amaya on Grantland.com (http://www.grantland.com/blog/the-triangle/post/_/id/77542/baseball-scout-school-part-2-rating-beers-falling-in-love-with-a-cub-and-imagining-another-a-rod):

    "The third baseman wasn’t bad, but Amaya stood out. In infield, he showed off a decent arm for second with an incredibly quick transfer, redirecting feeds from the shortstop in an eyeblink and finishing with a Jose Iglesias–like flip from his shoetops. In the game, the clinic continued with two diving plays in the field, but Amaya also impressed us with his appearance at the plate — even before he homered.

    I left the park with my first true prospect crush, the kind that’s based not on stats but on something I saw in person. We’d seen some prospects before Amaya — Cleveland’s Clint Frazier, the fifth overall pick in this year’s draft, made a quick cameo at the end of one game — but this was our first extended look at upper-level athleticism.

    When I returned to the hotel, I looked up Amaya’s stats, which would’ve been my first move before Scout School. And based on those stats, I never would have pegged him as a player of interest. In 117 games and 500-plus plate appearances for Kane County, Chicago’s Class A affiliate, Amaya batted .252/.329/.369. He hit only five homers, and he made 22 errors at second. Those don’t sound like a prospect’s stats.

    The disconnect could tell us one of two things, both of which are important lessons to learn. It could be that Amaya’s stats are misleading: Maybe the talent is real and he’s about to break out. But it’s also possible that we happened to see him have the game of his life, or that his tools don’t play against tougher competition.

    So which is it? I asked a couple pro scouting execs if I was right to fall for Amaya. “You did well,” said one, who sees him as a future everyday player. “Awesome,” said the other, upon hearing how I felt. “Me too.” "

  • We can never have too many 2nd. base prospects,one of them has to pan out in the end. You would think.Barney has to be on life support soon.

  • IIRC, several people had Amaya pegged as a breakout candidate last winter. I recall reading a report from one scout that thought Amaya's upside is higher than Alcantara's. That's pretty high praise considering what Alcantara did this year. D-Cub fans should really enjoy watching Amaya and Candelario this coming year, both will probably spend the full season in Daytona, and both are 2014 breakout candidates.

  • If Ozzie was manager of the Cubs ... boy would that be something.

  • In reply to Average Samaritan:

    Yes, vomit inducing.

  • Ah, recaps! A great way to wake up in the morning!

    Please forgive if I am confusing players, but wasn't Amaya pegged as a pegged for a conversion to catcher?

  • In reply to CubsFanInNorway:

    Yes he was. Don't know where that's going now.

  • All this hitting and no Baez. Life is becoming very good.

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    "Albert Almora is one of those guys you can probably roll out of bed at 3 in the morning, putting him in the batters box and he'll line a single up the middle."

    Albert Almora is going to be a perennial all-star.

  • In reply to Michael Canter:

    So is Baez! So is Bryant! I can't wait for the future to arrive!

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    In reply to Michael Canter:

    Well, hard to say that definitively today. Everyone raves on Albert's ability to hit, instincts, makeup, etc. His actual speed though is not elite, his instincts play that up. And it's no guarantee he hits for power.

    One career arc could be a .300 hitter with 10-15 HRs who plays a gold-glove caliber CF. That is an all-star for sure.

    Another career arc, on the other end, is a player whose lack of raw speed forces a move to a corner, where his .280 bat and weak power make him a 2nd division starter

    These are the ends of course; his floor is probably higher than Baez's, in many ways, because he doesn't strike out

  • In reply to Zonk:

    Almora plays outstanding CF defense, there is no reason on earth that he would move to a corner spot, so that "career arc" makes no sense.

    .

  • It's been widely reported that Almora can play CF at the major league level right now. Worrying about him moving to a corner should not even be a consideration. His bat will determine whether he is a solid starter or a potential All Star in my opinion.

  • Sucks that Pittsburgh lost. It seems that I have to root for the Det-Oak winner rest of the playoffs. All the other options are unappealing, to say the least.

  • Please educate me, AFL is equal to what level? AA?

  • In reply to Ike03:

    Correct me if I'm wrong - but the AFL isn't really like any 'level'. It is certainly home to a lot elite prospects, but offensive numbers are often skewed towards the positive since most teams want their top pitching prospects to take some time off and save mileage on their arms.

    Thats why you see a lot of 10-8 or 9-7 games. Or, if a top pitching prospect is there, its more about getting some extra work / trying to refine a pitch.

    I don't think you should put much stock in offensive numbers - even though its nice to see our guys do well. There are probably some interesting match-ups - i.e. an elite bat going up against an elite pitcher early in a game. I think Bryant did well against a flamethrower in the 1st game...

    I guess I'd say the AFL is maybe comparable to A+?

    All that said, its nice to see Almora put together a really nice game - given his extended layoff...

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