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Daily Cubs Minors Recap: Paniagua hitting his stride and some more draft signings, including 8th rd LHP Tommy Thorpe

Daily Cubs Minors Recap: Paniagua hitting his stride and some more draft signings, including 8th rd LHP Tommy Thorpe
Juan Paniagua

UPDATED: 9:00 AM

It seems the signings are leaking in little by little but the big domino yet to fall is 2nd round pick Jake Stinnett, who played late into the college season.  Stinnett is expected to sign an underslot deal and that may set the stage for the Carson Sands and Dylan Cease signings.

It appears that Stinnett's teammate, Charles White, a CF, has signed, so perhaps he isn't too far behind.

It appears that the Chicago Cubs Draft Tracker site has used up it's bandwidth, so we'll have to wait on the details but it appears that 8th round LHP Tommy Thorpe will sign, pending  a physical.

I actually got a chance to see Thorpe pitch last summer, but I didn't see him at his best.  He lacked command that day, something he relies on as a finesse lefty.  Thorpe showed an upper 80s fastball, a solid curve, and a pretty good changeup -- which sounds similar to the profile of a few Cubs pitchers over the past few years, many of whom have made the majors (Chris Rusin, James Russell, Brooks Raley)  or are at least knocking on the door (Eric Jokisch).  I can't say that I left thinking, "I hope the Cubs draft that guy!", but it was only a couple of innings after a long season, so I also can't say it was a good day to judge him by.  He did go 11-4 with a 2.14 ERA with 33 BB and 90 Ks in 105 innings that year, so obviously he is capable of being better than the one day I happened to see him pitch.

But without being able to click the links, we will move on for now and recap the games. It was not a good day overall for Cubs affiliates.

Fresno 5 - Iowa 2

  • Eric Jokisch walked 4 batters in 6 innings, which is unusual for him,  One of those walks came just before a grand slam that broke this game open.  He gave up 5 runs in all.  Jokisch is the kind of guy who has to throw strikes and avoid working up in the zone but he didn't appear to have his best command today.  Jokisch is 5-6 with a 3.64 ERA overall this seaso[n.
  • Arismendy Alcantara singled and scored a run in 4 ABs.  There was some hope by some fans that he would get the call after Bonifacio's injury today but it seems more likely that Ryan Sweeney gets the call.  He was removed from the Kane County lineup before the game today.
  • C Rafael Lopez is making a case to be added to the roster by the end of the year.  He had two more hits today and drove in  a run,  He's now hitting .318, though it is early.
  • The versatile Chris Valaika was at 1B today and he hit his 5th HR today.  He is hitting .287/.358/.403 entering the game, so he has tailed off a bit, his OPS dropped under .800.

Mississippi 4 - Tennessee 2

  • Dae-Eun Rhee may not be blowing hitters away but he has always has had a good idea of how to pitch, and now that he has a lot of minor league experience, that is even more true.  He pitched 6 innings and walked 3 batters and struck out just 2 but he only gave up 2 runs.  Rhee has a 3.49 ERA on the season.
  • Zach Cates did not allow a hit but a resurfacing of his control issues and his own error led to 2 unearned runs,  costing the Smokies the game.
  • Hunter Cervenka came in and struck out all 4 batters he faced.  He lowered his ERA to 2.08 and raised his K rate to 11.8 per 9 IP.
  • Arodys Vizcaino finished up with a scoreless inning, striking out one (video below, h/t Justin)

 

  •  It may not have been a great day for the Smokies offense but Kris Bryant continues to roll along.  He walked, doubled and scored both runs.
  • Charles Cutler singled twice, walked, and drove in a run.
  • Rubi Silva has been mired in a season long slump.  He did look like he was going to turn it around earlier in the season but has since tailed off, hitting just .239/.288/.365 after hitting a triple, single and driving in a run.

Dunedin 5  - Daytona 1

Dunedin 5 - Daytona 2

  • Ugly line for Taylor Scott who went just 4.2 innings, allowed 6 hits, 5 runs, 5 BBs, struck out 3, and allowed 2 HRs.  He fell to 3-5 with a 4.79 ERA
  • Michael Jensen continued his solid comeback season with 1.1 scoreless innings with one K.  He has a 2.83 ERA on the year.
  • In the 2nd game, LHP Nathan Dorris had a similarly hideous line, allowing 5 hits, 5 runs, walking 2 and striking out 1 -- except that Dorris only lasted only 2.1 innings.  He has struggled transitioning to a starter in the FSL, posting a 5.96 ERA to go with a 2-3 record.
  • Jose Rosario came in guns-a-blazin', striking out all 5 hitters he faced,
  • Starling Peralta pitched a scoreless inning, striking out one and lowering his ERA to 3.86 after having his own bad outing last time out.
  • Not a lot of hitting for the D-Cubs but Wes Darvill had a nice pair of games, going 2 for 4 with walk and his first HR in the FSL.
  • Zeke DeVoss doubled, walked, scored, and drove in a run in 3 PA s in the 2nd game.

Kane County 4 - Peoria 1

  • Juan Paniagua had his second very good start in a row, going 6 scoreless innings while allowing just 3 hits and 1 walk while striking out 6.  In his last 2 starts he has gone 12 scoreless with 3 walks and 15 Ks.  He also has a 1.11 ERA in his last 4 starts, striking out 23 in 24.1 innings.  Overall he is 3-3 with a 3.25 ERA.
  • Something has gotten into James Pugliese, maybe it's the bullpen role but he has been completely dominant at Kane County.  He struck out the side and lowered his ERA to 1.19. earning his 2nd save.  He has an incredible 7 to 1 K to BB ratio, striking out 42 batters in 30.1 innings while walking just 6.  As good as he is out of the bullpen, it'd be interesting to see how he'd do as a starter.  He does have a full repertoire.
  • Danny Lockhart has been hitting well and today it was 2 more hits and an RBI to raise his average to .276 to go with a solid .342 OBP.
  • Shawon Dunston went 2 for 4 with an RBI and a run scored but after showing so much patience last year, he has walked just 7 times this year, resulting in just a .285 OBP.  He has been hitting better of late but Dunston needs to find the plate discipline he had last season.
  • It seems like Carlos Penalver does something positive everyday, yet he is hitting  just .245/.292/.311 on the year.  He tripled, scored, and drove in a run today.
  • Trey Martin clawed back up to the Mendoza line with a pair of singles, a run scored, and his 10th SB.

 

 

 

Comments

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  • What do people make of the idea that promoting Bryant would be good for Baez? Maybe Baez watching a player that is having tons of success with a more org-friendly approach would be something to spur him on a little.

  • In reply to Juiceboxjerry:

    Awful idea

  • In reply to GrinningCat:

    I think he meant AAA...which is likely gonna happen soon.

  • In reply to Juiceboxjerry:

    It can't hurt Baez, but the Cubs should promote Bryant when they're ready to promote him, not because of another player.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    Good point. I don't thing that Baez could learn hitting from Bryant anyway because they're approach is so different, but Baez might benefit from being a teammate with prospect like himself. Bryant models a profession demeanor that could rub off.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    Absolutely. I just meant assuming they were ready to promote him sometime very soon.

  • In reply to Juiceboxjerry:

    I think having Bryant behind Baez might force better pitches to Baez (as a walk is then more costly). This could limit his development in learning to deal with bad pitches.

    All of this assumes Bryant hits in AAA. The way Baez dominated AA, I thought AAA would be pretty smooth. I can't assume Bryant won't have some adjustment issues similar to Baez.

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    In reply to springs:

    After the last couple of spring trainings and small sample size in showcase leagues there was some warning that Baez was having problems with a good breaking ball. So this struggle is not totally out of the blue. We can just keep expecting him to adjust and really have a break out at some point.

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    In reply to springs:

    I predict that Bryant will take more walks in AAA than in AA. John knows more about this than I do, but my impression of one of the bigger differences between the two leagues is that AA has some of the younger prospects who they are developing, which means pitching around someone doesn't do them much good. In AAA, you have a mix of prospects and journeymen who want good numbers to get them up to the highest level. They'd rather add a walk onto their performance than a two-run homer. I predict many will pitch around him or attempt to expose a hole in his swing... which is good for his overall development.

  • In reply to springs:

    I keep hearing over & over (no harm meant to you Springs) about how Baez dominated .... I'm not so sure Baez has dominated (other than hitting a bunch of HRs) at any level. Look at his numbers .... I saw him play at Daytona and although I was happy they moved him to TN he definitely did not dominate in Daytona. Not at least by the FO's (or my) definition where they expect a player to totally dominate at a level b4 they are worthy of a promotion. Now when you look at Kris Bryant's numbers at TN this yr (and at other levels previously) - that's totally dominating at a level!

    There are many offensive categories to look at but look at these select few:

    Baez in Daytona BA :.274 OBP: .334 HR: 17 OPS: .873
    Baez in TN BA: BA: .294 OBP: .346 HR: 20 OPS: .983

    Bryant in TN BA: .359 OBP: .461 HR: 22 OPS: 1.178

    Add any other offensive categories you want - that's fine but I don't believe it changes the point. The point is Baez has demonstrated he is an elite power hitter but not a dominate player offensively speaking. Bryant, on the other hand, has been a dominate offensive player at every level except for his two games (statistically insignificant) at rookie ball.

  • In reply to Pepitone8:

    I don't remember the dates, and I'm too lazy to go look at the stats, but Baez had a tough start to his Daytona career and then really turned it on for a the end of his stint there. Same for his time at Tennessee. If you look at his monthly splits last year, it will tell a better story: he dominated the last half of his time at A+ and AA.

  • In reply to Cubswin4harry:

    Good point Cubswin4harry and definitely a consideration but I'm not completely sold on this idea ... that he starts slow and then adjusts. The thing that concerns me (and more so than other prospects) is the fear that Baez will not be able to continually adjust at the MLB level where scouting an opponents weaknesses is much more prevalent and sophisticated. I think Baez is a high risk guy and I hope he works out well for us because we all know how important he is to our rebuild. But, I have to believe the FO is also very concerned about the risks associated with Baez and how he does not fit the mold of the type of player they chose to draft because of his high level of risk.

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    In reply to Pepitone8:

    A tale of two titties, er cities, my friend. By dominate, here's what happened. Baez, one of the younger players at every level he played, has struggled with each promotion. He eventually adjusts, then absolutely dominates for the duration of his stay. The slow start skewers the overall stats, but yes, once he adjusts to a new level, he dominates.

  • In reply to Mike Partipilo:

    2013 monthly splits here:

    http://www.baseball-reference.com/minors/player.cgi?id=baez--000jav&type=bgl&year=2013

    OBP of .380 in June - his last full month at Daytona
    OBP of .398 in August - his last full month at Tenn

  • In reply to Pepitone8:

    How is a 20 year old SS with a 983 OPS not dominating? He finished in the top 5 in HRs in the Southern League despite playing half a season.

    If the FO waited for every prospect to meet your definition of domination before moving a prospect, there would be 100+ guys playing in KC and Kris Bryant playing by himself in Iowa.

  • In reply to mjvz:

    Exactly!

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    In reply to mjvz:

    Because over 600 points of that OPS is just slugging?

    By your definition, the only thing necessary is power. He had good, not great AVG, and good but nor great OBP.

  • In reply to Giffmo:

    Exactly Giffmo! There's more to it than slugging! And, IMO that is part of Javy's problem (over swinging) as well ... when you see him in person you can't help but notice how hard & violently he swings. He looks like a guy trying to when a home run derby contest.

  • In reply to mjvz:

    Thank you - that's my point - Baez is an elite power hitter! Hey, I'm happy he got promoted and the FO had to push him a bit b/c we had no other prospects as far along (advanced in the minors) as Baez and the rebuild is built around the development of our prospects. Baez is a streaky player and his promotions typically coincide with him getting on one of his hot streaks. However, as you can see, the FO is being more cautious with Bryant in taking their time to promote him from AA although he has dominated basically all season at AA. As our prospect pipeline gets fuller, the FO will move guys slower to the next level (with the exception of elite talent like Bryant).

  • In reply to Pepitone8:

    I think we can all agree that Bryant has better floor than Baez, but Baez has a higher ceiling than Bryant. IMO, Bryant has past Baez on the prospect list because his ceiling/floor combo is higher than Baez's. Much more polish in his game. With that said, Baez has struggled everywhere he has been and figured it out with tremendous success. I expect much of the same from him in AAA. It might come later than usual, but I fully expect him to have a .270-.290 avg by years end, with 25+ bombs.

  • In reply to NathanE:

    Great comment Nathan and I totally agree! I've seen both play, in person, in the minors and quite frankly there was no comparison - Bryant was much, much more polished than Baez. And, before people come on here and say "well Bryant is older, blah, blah, ...." Bull, there's one yr difference in age and Baez has been playing professionally for two more yrs than Bryant.

  • In reply to Pepitone8:

    My comment on the subject comes with no first hand views of either player. It's been noted (and video has shown) that Baez has cut down quite a bit on his swing. Everything from the leg kick to the violent swing has quieted.
    I'm not astute enough to know if this is his own doing or his hitting coach. But it's an adjustment and, to me, an important one.
    If any of you who have seen the old and the new can comment I'd be most interested. This has been a very lively and most respectful discussion about two very important players.

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    In reply to Juiceboxjerry:

    I believe it is a residual factor. In other words, it should not be considered at all in the Bryant decision, although it may allow Baez's competitive side to heat up. He's clearly a competitor so I believe there are some advantages to it. Call Bryant up to AAA when he's ready (which is basically now) and hopefully Baez will respond well to Bryant's Emperor-like dominance of Iowa (I know, just a prediction).

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    In reply to Juiceboxjerry:

    Just read Gilliam signed!

  • In reply to Andrew Tripp:

    Where did you read that, do you have a link?

  • Here is the KXTG Radio interview from yesterday (June 12th) with Cubs 8th round draft pick, LHP Tommy Thorpe, who says that he will sign with the Cubs about 10 times during the interview. Thorpe who has been a Cubs fan his whole life, has basically already said yes (that's why Yag's has him in blue), he just has to pass the physical, sign the actual contract, and then they are sending him to Mesa.

    He said that that his development plan with the Cubs will be to build up his arm strength and velocity from the 88-90 mph he throws now, to throw consistently in the low 90's. He said he needs to work on his offspeed stuff (what pitching prospect doesn't?) and that his changeup is his best pitch but that he didn't throw it very much this last year.

    https://soundcloud.com/kxtg-the-bald-faced-truth/bft-tommy-thorpe-06-12-14

  • In reply to Ghost Dawg:

    Thanks for this Ghost Dawg!! Another one in the fold!!

  • I'm not surprised by Baez's struggles - not happy about it, but not surprised. I think he may put it all together by mid-summer next year.

    To me, the big shocker is Almora. Totally unexpected. Waiting for a hot streak to give him a boost. He's so much better than this.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to HackWilson09:

    In all honesty I worry more about Almora than Soler.

    Almora has a BABIP of .277 which is insanely low but he is also walking 2.5% of the time. I just look at the flop rate of MLB prospects and I think he has a lot to prove before we pencil him in for 2016.

    Soler though has hit in his 27 ABs this season. Obviously this is an extremely short sample size but I think the Cubs are just being extremely cautious with his rehab. Based on absolutely nothing but my own theories I think that if he were on the big league club he would be out 2 weeks but since he is only a prospect they are taking all the time they need for him.

    To make things even more frustrating Almora has 6 walks on the year and Soler has 3.

    This being said John just ranked Almora #3 and Soler #6 for his organizational rankings. Considering 90% I know about these prospects comes from this amazing blog I am eager to read his list.

  • In reply to Daniel Rosenberg:

    I agree. I think Soler would hit well in AAA right now. Soler is older than Almora though, and I think has should be factored in. Not really worried about Almora just yet.

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    In reply to Daniel Rosenberg:

    I teach hitting and I've seen Soler live and up close. Personally, I think he has THE HIGHEST ceiling of all of our prospects. If only he could stay on the field.

  • Maryland didn't make the College World Series, so Stinnett can sign at any time.

  • I wonder if/when JC Pani will be promoted. Given his age, I am hoping he'll be a fast mover now that he appears to have shaken off the rust.

    John have you seen any of his recent starts? Does he look as good as the results have been?

  • I got into the CCDT data base late last night without the bandwidth error message but when I tried just now the bandwidth exceeded popped up. Even with the error you can see the information but it is shaded. I can tell the signed picks are 1, 3, 5, 8,11, 12,13,16,20,21,25, and 27.

  • In reply to John57:

    The problem with the bandwidth thing is he can't update the list. Even though you can see it in the background, it is not new stuff.

  • In reply to Bilbo161:

    I was able to get the info, some new stuff as of yesterday so I went ahead and linked it.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    Sure, I understood. Yags updates things in his PSD draft thread and will let us know when the tracker is either updated or moved. Sure you knew that already John.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    John the site seems to be working again. :)

  • In reply to John57:

    Wooohoo! A Twitter follower taught me how to get around it, so I was able to check it anyway, but this makes it nicer.

  • Starting pitchers from last night's Daytona game,,,,

    Nathan Dorris vs. Daniel Norris

    Pugliese's numbers are just plain silly. He is due for a promotion shortly as well. Cubs are in a position to have a really good bullpen for years to come with the arms in the system.

    Interesting to see that KC 3B Jordan Hankins who is hitting very well was drafted as a Catcher. Over .300 now and might be a sleeper type of prospect to watch.

  • In reply to IrwinFletcher:

    There are multiple players that I think should get promoted based on numbers and age. This analysis is really just based on those terms (and, to an extent, people ahead of them), so ignores many other factors that I don't see by not watching games or being a baseball scout. Mainly Bryant, a few OF without power and Bryant and JCP should be promoted.

    KC -- Most starters are young and should stay here, but JC P and a few relievers are most noteworthy.

    JC P -- John gave his stats. Mainly hitting a great stride and moving to a pitcher's league like Daytona should allow him to continue to grow against better competition.

    Jose Arias (23 yr, RHP): Reliever has come on through May -- last 8 games are 16 IP, 8 H, 4BB, 3 runs and 22 K. 2.16 ERA overall

    James Pug -- John discussed. Daytona starters aren't great, so Pug get a chance to start there.

    Remillard or Brockemeyer (21 and 22 yrs): Rem is hurt now, so not sure. Contreras will be main catcher at Daytona, but one of these can move up and DH (hitting needed at Daytona for sure).

    Ben Carhart (24 yrs): Starting to hit well but is older. Can move up and fill the role of Radjemacher if he gets promoted.

    Daytona: I think this league has a really bad effect on hitters who are not superstars (i.e., like Almora and Candy). Not sure I would want to keep Daytona as an affiliate when their contract is up. Few performing great here, so here are my thoughts.

    Bijan Radjemacher (23 yrs): Slowed down after blistering start, but I think he could use a move to AA and see if he can, at a minimum, keep hitting for decent average.

    Andrew McKirahan (24 LHP): Strong numbers in relief, though not great WHIP (0.95 ERA with 5 R (3 earned) in 28.1 IP, but 24 H and 7 BB. 29 Ks though). At 24, lets see if he can do it at AA.

    Lance Rymel (24 C): Struggling again, if you promote Rem or Brockemeyer, I'd send him back to Kane County.

    Tennessee: Other than Kris Bryant, I think the following merit consideration for promotion:

    Armando Rivera (26) -- Ready for AAA, if not majors.

    Vizcaino (24) -- Similar to Armando, though younger. Can keep same control over innings at Iowa, but you do have Parker as save man there. Probably good to keep at AA.

    Hunter Cervenka (24): Been dominant, (26 IP, 15 H, 34 K and 12 BB). Can either team with Rosscup for dominant lefty combo at Iowa or fill his role after he is promoted.

  • fb_avatar

    Shawon Dunston, Jr. - You think it is genetics that he is becoming less walk-prone than before? It was bound to catch up to him sometime. His dad hacked at anything and everything from what I recall, although I admit he was one of my favorite Cubbies from the '80's and '90's.

  • In reply to Joe Stallings:

    Ha! I completely understand where that is coming from. I think Daddy D. was the first prospect I waited for with bated breath so-to-speak. What an arm. The way he covered ground on pop flies into the outfield was just astounding! 1st to home I never saw anyone faster.

  • In reply to Bilbo161:

    #%$! baited not bated.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Bilbo161:

    Yes! He was exciting to watch. We need that excitement again. Dawson and Dunston played baseball with so much energy.. they were a blast to watch.

  • Dang,.... what's Bryant's line in 65 Games played this year,....

    59 runs, 85 hits, 19 2B, 22 HR, 56 RBI, OBP 0.461, SLG. 0.717,....

    Projected onto a 160-game season that's just amazing,....

    140+ runs, 200+ Hits, 130+ RBI, 50+ HR,....

  • In reply to drkazmd65:

    S.T.U.D!

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    In reply to drkazmd65:

    He's got some pop

  • In reply to Zonk:

    Just a little ;)

  • In reply to drkazmd65:

    MVP numbers.

  • In reply to drkazmd65:

    Also on pace for nearly 20 sb...

  • In reply to jswick23:

    Those numbers are a little skewed. When I saw him he tried to steal everything he was on base. He has ok speed, not great. He was thrown out twice by AA catchers so I wouldn't expect him to steal very many bases with cubs

  • Any chance Alcantara gets called up if Bonafacio goes on the DL? Let him start out at 2nd, maybe get a game or two in center.

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    In reply to Ike03:

    Why would he get called up? He has not been very good this year. He's striking out more than he ever has and his walk rate is less than half of what it was last year.

  • In reply to Giffmo:

    What? He has a .819 OPS. That is not very good from a 2nd baseman?

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    In reply to Ike03:

    Did you read what I wrote?

    He has an okay triple sash, sure. But he's playing in the PCL, so that should be taken with a grain of salt. Meanwhile his walk rate and K rate are both categorically BAD.

    So, an .819 PS in the PCL, while not walking and striking out frequently? No. That's not good for a second baseman.

  • In reply to Giffmo:

    Alcantara isn't going to walk. Last year was an abberation. He's also going to strike out a lot. If his k-rate and walk rate mean he's not ready now, then he's never going to be ready.

  • In reply to Ike03:

    Alcantara will probably be called up in Sept. That is my guess, but it is strictly a guess. The FO will promote guys when think they are ready and since he is not promoted yet, they think he is not ready now.

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    In reply to Ike03:

    ...yeah, if he doesn't improve, then he won't be ready.

    And therefore, won't get promoted.

    What's so hard to understand, here? The FO has said time and again tat promotions are earned. A guy that doesn't walk and starikes out too much while putting up okay numbers in a hitters league hasn't earned anything.

    Seriously, what do you expect him to do in the majors if he's playing just okay in triple-A?

  • In reply to Giffmo:

    Sweet, why is Junior Lake and Mike Olt on the roster then? Junior Lake almost has an identical profile to Alcantara

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    In reply to Ike03:

    Is that a rhetorical question?

    Lake is two years older, plus he was putting up better numbers in AAA when he was called up - especially by the metrics. Lake was striking out LESS than he ever had in his career. PLUS the OF has no depth at all, so there weren't many other options.

    Olt is 25 and played well in Spring training. Not much point in holding him back. Age is too far to take it slow. He was nearly ready 2 years ago when he got injured.

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    In reply to Ike03:

    It's Sweeney getting called up. Alcantara was maybe a possibility, but more time in AAA won't hurt him either. He's been decent, but not stellar.

    The real winner, IMO is Chris Coghlan....I would bet he was headed for a DFA when Sweeney returned, but he was saved by Bonifacio's injury, at least temporarily........

  • fb_avatar

    This article sure makes it sound like Sands is almost a lock to sign. http://www.tallahassee.com/story/sports/college/fsu/baseball/2014/06/06/florida-state-baseball-mlb-draft-north-florida-christian/10074481/

    Is it possible they are purposely withholding the details from Steele (and maybe even Sands?) signings so someone like Cease doesn't have more leverage in knowing what they have left to spend?

    Also, is it at all possible that they will be able to sign Sands, Cease & Gilliam? I read that Gilliam would take 1st-2nd round money to sign, but I think something between $500-600K (3rd round money) would be hard for him to turn down as a 23rd round pick. With that said and without crunching numbers, I am not sure that would even be possible unless Cease doesn't sign, if at all.

  • In reply to Geoff H:

    It appears that he has signed (or at least he will) but you are probably right, Cubs probably withholding info until they get everyone signed to avoid any potential issues.

  • In reply to Geoff H:

    I believe it was reported that Gilliam was not going to sign.

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    RE: Stinnet, Hoyer mentioned the other day (on radio?) that the timelines for drafted pitchers and hitters are different the first year in the organization. For Stinnet, for example, he has already pitched alot of innings; there is no rush, because he will likely only pitch 15-20 innings for Cubs in 2014. They want to avoid overwork. It's more about getting into Cubs nutrition and conditioning programs, getting to know the coaches, and preparing for a good offseason into next year. If you look, nearly all our draftees last year pitched about 20 innings or so, so this must be part of the "Cubs plan". Baby the young arms.

    Hitters are different; more reps can't hurt them, so they want to get them in as soon as possible. That also fits with last year, as Bryant, Henneman, etc, all played right away.

    I think we can expect the "Cubs Way" this year with our recent draftees; lots of hitters, but only a few innings for pitchers. Schwarbers debut is 2014, but Stinnet's is basically 2015. This is also why I don't think we really miss much development time with the injured guys.

  • It would be nice to hear Dillon Maples ready to start throwing after breaking a rib. He was just getting into a nice routine and got injured again. Any date on his return ? Also where is Trey McNutt on his injury rehab sure would be nice to see him on track again

  • a lot's made of bryant's K rate...is there anyone on the board here who's seen enough of him or got the word from the pros re: what it is he's having trouble hitting? are his Ks swings-and-misses or a high % of the time is he caught looking?

    if it's offspeed stuff he's adjusting to, then would expect that to continue at AAA (not to mention MLB).

    if it's a hole in his swing that's being exploited, then would expect that to continue at AAA/MLB as well.

    if it's pitchers pitching him in reverse or tossing unexpected stuff at odd times in the count, then that's also an adjustment.

    if it's his selectivity, then that's something that's fixable (easiest) at any level and is more about getting as many PAs as possible to ID those pitches more quickly & know to lay off.

    appears he's obliterating fastballs, but that's a guess. would make sense, given his selectivity...once the pitcher gets behind, kris sees more heat and deposits those pitches "where they ain't." question i have is whether his performance with 2 strikes is improving over time..?

  • With the Southern League's All-Star game next Tuesday, does anyone who from the Smokies were selected. Also, does anyone know if Bryant is gonna be in the home run derby on Monday?

  • In reply to Peter Chicago:

    Cubs Southern League All-Stars

    # - indicates starter

    Kris Bryant (#)- 3B
    Stephen Bruno - 2B
    John Andreoli (#) - OF
    Corey Black - RHP
    Armando Rivero - RHP

    Rafael Lopez (#*) - C {was voted starting catcher but is ineligible due to promotion to AAA}

  • As I mentioned in a a previous post I think they promote Bryant in the next few weeks about the same time Manny Ramirez arrives in Iowa as a player coach. I would think Manny spend the rest of this summer and fall until Thanksgiving with Baez and Bryant around him on and off the field talking hitting. The may also put him on Alcantara and in addition possibly Vitters and Jackson to try to reclaim them.

  • I think FO should promote Bryant immediately after all star game then let him & Baez play together a couple months & work with Manny. If they are both ready by sept call them up together or wait until next year if they aren't. That way it takes some pressure off 1 when called up. Also can allow them to develop some chemistry together. Baez still needs some work & Bryant just needs a little fine tuning.

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