Daily Minors Recap: Watkins HR in the 14th wins it; Fujikawa on road back; the "other" Baez stays hot

If you are a big fan of the draft and will be in the Chicago area on August 16th, then let me know if you'd like free tickets to the Under Armour High School All-American Game at Wrigley Field.

If you were there last year than you were among the first to catch a glimpse of Cubs big money signings RHP Dylan Cease and LHP Carson Sands.  It also featured OF Daz Cameron, who may be the 1st overall pick in the 2015 draft.  He will be there again this year.

Other potential top picks who have already committed include SS Brendan Rogers (FL) OF's Ryan Johnson (TX) and Kyle Tucker(FL), and LHP Justin Cooper (CA).

Let me know in the comments and via e-mail.  Preference will be given to Cubs Den readers and if you comment please let me know your screen name.  We will probably have a beer before the game, but we will make plans for that later.

On with the recap...

Iowa 2 - Omaha 1

  • Eric Jokisch was a beast for the 2nd consecutive start going 7 innings and striking out 11 while allowing just 3 hits and one walk.  Jokisch had given up 5 or more runs for 4 consecutive starts prior to July and had a 5.79 ERA in June.  But in his first two July starts he has pitched 14 innings, allowed one run while walking one and striking out 18.  He lowered his ERA to 3.95.
  • Armando Rivero sat around 94 but reached as high as 97 when he needed it in 1.2 scoreless innings.  He walked one and struck out 3.  His ERA at Iowa is 1.80.
  • Michael Heesch was an unexpected hero.  The big LHP made the jump all the way from Kane County to fill in for a depleted Iowa staff and came through in a big way, throwing 3.1 scoreless innings, walking 2 and striking out 4 to pick up a win.
  • Zac Rosscup got the last 2 outs to get his second save.
  • 14 innings and 5 hits means there isn't a whole lot of offense to report. Logan Watkins hit the game winning HR in the 14th.  Josh Vitters doubled home Chris Valaika for the first run.

Daytona 4 - Dunedin 1

Dunedin 8 - Daytona 6

  • Felix Pena had a game that both old school and new school people can love.  He went 5.2 innings and allowed just one hit and one run while also walking just 2 and striking out 7.  It was Pena's 2nd win of the year.  He is 2-6 with a 3.09 ERA.
  • Starling Peralta pitched the last 1.1 innings and walked one and struck out 3 to pick up his first save.  Peralta has a 3.28 ERA but also has a nearly 5 to 1 K to BB ratio.  Great bounce back year for him.
  • In the second game Jose Rosario had one of those frustrating games as he walked 4 while also allowing 7 hits and 4 runs in 4.2 innings.
  • Recently promoted Tyler Bremer gave up 3 runs in 2.1 innings to take the loss.  Bremer had come into the 8th inning with a 6-5 lead but allowed 2 in the 8th and then an insurance run in the 9th.
  • Marco Hernandez went 2 for 3 with a walk to raise his average to .287 and his OBP to .326.  It may not seem like much but the walk was his 16th, as many as he had all season and just 3 less than 2012.
  • Albert Almora had 2 hits in the first game with an RBI before finally cooling off and going 0 for 4 in the second.  He is hitting .275/.299/.383 on the year with 5 HRs.
  • Rock Shoulders walked 3 times and hit his 7th HR of the season, putting him one behind Dan Vogelbach for the team lead.
  • Gioskar Amaya went 3 for 6 with a double and 3 runs scored.  Amaya is hitting .279/.365/.354 on the year.
  • Jordan Hankins went 2 for 3 with 2 RBI and a run scored
  • Bill McKinney went 1 for 4 with 2 RBI and 2 walks.

Quad Cities 3 - Kane County 1

  • Daury Torrez fell to 9-4 with a 3.02 ERA when he allowed 3 runs in 5 innings.  He showed his usual good control (1 walk) and he also struck out 5.
  • LHP Gerardo Concepcion bounced back with a scoreless 3 inning performance.  He did not allow a single hit and walked just one hitter while striking out 3.  Concepcion's ERA is at 4.40 but he has shown some improved arm strength this year, working in the 90-91 range.  He has nearly a strikeout per inning (26 in 27.2 innings) while walking just under 3 batters per 9 IP.
  • Kyle Schwarber went 1 for 3 with a double, walk, and run scored.  He was driven in by Jeimer Candelario who went 2 for 4 with a double.
  • Ben Carhart and Trey Martin each added a pair of hits while Kevin Brown singled and walked.

Boise 6 - Hillsboro 2

  •  It's been a bit of an up and down year for Erick Leal but he improved to 3-2 and lowered his ERA to 4.98 with a 5 inning, 2 run performance.
  • 10th round pick Ryan Williams, who signed as an underslot as a college senior, is now at Boise after making his debut in AZ, as many Cubs draft picks do.  Williams struck out 3 and walked none in 2 scoreless innings.
  • Trey Lang has really made progress since last season and a scoreless inning lowered his ERA to 0.87.  Lang flashed a mid 90s fastball when drafted but his best pitch was a hard slider.  The progress has come with his command as Lang has cut his walk down to 4 in 10.1 innings while striking out 13.
  • Jeffrey Baez stayed hot and while he didn't hit another HR, he did get 3 hits, stole his 13th base, and scored 2 runs.  Baez is now hitting ,267/.342/.543 with 7 HRs and 13 SBs.
  • Rashad Crawford also continues to hit well, though he hasn't done it with the same kind of power.  Crawford has been very productive, however, and a 2 hit day (double, triple) raised his average to .315.  He drove in 3 runs.
  • Mark Zagunis went one for 4 with an RBI and stole his 5th base.  Interestingly he played OF.  He did that often in college but had mostly been a catcher as a pro.
  • Mark Malave went 2 for 3 and scored a run.  Malave was the catcher today.

 AZL D'Backs 8 - AZL Cubs 0

  • Kyuji Fujikawa moved one step closer to a return with a scoreless inning.
  • Jose Paulino continues to struggle at AZ, allowing 7 runs (5 earned) in 4 innings. However, he walked none and struck out 5, so there was some improvement in that area.  Paulino entered the game with 6 walks and 5 Ks.  He has a 10.03 ERA in 3 "starts" this year.
  • After a successful stint in the DSL, Andin Diaz's success has carried over to the AZ Rookie League.  The 21 year old LHP has thrown 7 scoreless innings with no walks and 6 Ks so far in his stateside debut.
  • 18th rd pick Austyn Willis fared much better in his second appearances.  He pitched one innings, walked none and struck out 2.  He did give up a run but it was unearned.  Willis is a tall, projectable righty who can already hit the low 90s and shows the potential for solid breaking stuff.
  • James Norwood also bounced back with a much better outing, throwing a scoreless innings, walking one and striking out 2.  The 7th round pick has one of the hardest present fastballs among this year's picks, sitting 93-95 and touching 97.  He is more of a thrower than a pitcher at this point but he has plenty of arm strength for this staff to work with.
  • The AZ Cubs managed just 7 singles, 3 of them by soon to be 22 year old 2B Varonex Cuevas. Cuevas started the year in Boise but struggled.
  • Gleyber Torres returned to the lineup and had a single in 4 ABs,  He did strikeout 3 times, however.




Leave a comment
  • Imagine if the Cubs get Daz Cameron.. that would be so ridiculous

  • In reply to CubfanInUT:

    Having a good June costed them any chance of drafting 1-3

  • In reply to emartinezjr:

    We are 14 games under .500 and the worst team in the league is 15 games under .500. We currently have the fourth worst winning percentage in baseball. Hard to say that we don't have "any chance" to draft 1-3 from our current positiion on September 10th much less July 10th.

  • In reply to emartinezjr:

    The Cubs currently are in the 4th spot but only 1/2 game behind 3 teams with 72 games to go. They most certainly could get in 1-3 by the end of the year.

  • Rizzo has taken the lead in the all star voting!


  • In reply to Richard Beckman:

    Deservedly so! Justin Morneau on top was so wrong.

  • Besides the bloodlines for Cameron, what projects him as a top pick next year. And who else may be considered? I remember talk of Duke's SP.

  • In reply to Buzz:

    Speed, power, oozes athleticism. 5 tool guy with chance to be a much better hitter than dad.

  • In reply to Buzz:

    Besides Cameron, their is Michael Matuella , the Duke RHP you mentioned, he is 6 ft 6 and 225 pounds, with a very good four-pitch arsenal anchored by a fastball that can reach 97-98 mph. His skill set combined with his size and frame makes him a potential frontline starter. Their are also some other highly touted preps.

  • In reply to Buzz:

    Matuella had more strikeouts than walks & hits combined last year. Here is a snippet from TTFBaseball on Matuella...

    "The 6’-6”, 225 pound right-hander showed everything you want in a first-overall pick. He has the ideal size you want in an ace. He also showed the stuff, headlined by fastball that can touch 97 mph and sits 93-96. He adds two potential plus off-speed pitches in a 79-82 mph, 12-6 curveball with great depth and an 83-86 mph slider with tight spin. His change-up sits 87-89 and is a decent offering already. He has great command of his pitches and finished the season with a 2.78 ERA, 0.94 WHIP and 69 K/15 BB over 58.1 innings. Opponents hit just .190 against him. All eyes will be on him next year as the upside is silly."

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    Me and a buddy might be down there that weekend if 2 tickets would be possible

  • In reply to Jonathan Ley:

    Hey Jonathan, just send me an email with your address and I will send them out this weekend.

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    Long time reader, first time commenting. I would love to be at Wrigley for the UA game

  • In reply to Gus Medina:

    Hey Gus, you can send me an email with your mailing address and let me know how many you would need.

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    In reply to John Arguello:


  • You guys do a GREAT job of providing Sabermetrics on pitching and offense but very little mention is made on the minor leaguer's defensive development. Seems to me that the future at 3B, 2B, SS, corner OF and even C will ultimately be decided on whether Bryant can be a plus defender at 3B and whether Schwarber is able to stick as a C. Can we get some info on this?

  • In reply to SunnyD:

    Bryant is playing extremely well at 3B despite the error count. Has shown better than expected athleticism and more than enough arm. He can stick there at least for the next 5 years or so.

    Schwarber will have to work hard to be a competent catcher but most think the Cubs will speed up his development with a move to LF as soon as this offseason.

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    In reply to John Arguello:

    That's good to know on Bryant.....both he and Baez developed better than advertised at their respective positions.

    How is this Bryant comp: Troy Glaus. I know I'm not the first to think of that one. Glaus had great power, and was an underrated 3B. Let's hope Bryant can stay healthier though...

  • John,

    I would appreciate 4 tickets to this year's game if possible.

  • In reply to Corbi296:

    No problem. Just send me an email with your name and address.

  • I was at the Kane County game in Davenport last night. Missed the Schwarber double but was very tuned when he was behind the plate. I thought he did a good job framing pitches, didn't really allow anything to get by him, showed good agility. On the 2 attempted steals I recall, he had good footwork and a very quick release nailing the 2nd attempt. The first had a huge jump on Torres. I really think there is a chance he can play catcher at least an average MLB level

  • In reply to Jilogethan4:

    Thanks! I hope so. It would be a big plus if it doesn't slow down his ascent to the majors.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    I heard from a scout that Schwarber's role as a catcher will be determined in the Instructional League this off season. There are many voices which way to go, time will tell.

  • Hendricks up and Beeler sent back to AAA instead of B. Parker ?

    I wonder if a reliever is getting traded in a day or two, with only 4 starters on the staff ??

  • In reply to SouthsideB:

    The Cubs need only four starters before the AS break. The 'pen may be a bit gassed due to Tuesday's DH and Wada and Beeler only going 5 the last two games. I would guess these are the reasons for the move.

    Although I do expect a trade of a reliever before the deadline, and a busy Chicago-Iowa shuttle given that 2/5 of the current rotation have options.

  • In reply to SouthsideB:

    Parker can be sent back down without going through waivers.

  • In reply to mjvz:

    Supposed to be can't be sent back down.

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    In reply to mjvz:

    They are revocable waivers, though, and as a courtesy teams rarely try to claim a player on that type of revocable waiver, because the player can be pulled back. You only do that if you want to sort of screw the other club, like a division rival. So sez AZ Phil anyway.

    So Parker basically can still be optioned. They must be counting on sending him back when they need a 5th starter (or Grimm).

  • Does Jeffrey Baez still have the range and ability to play centerfield? I assume he's playing RF because of Crawford. Baez's speed and added power is very intriguing, especially if he could play center!

  • In reply to fsufrenzy911:

    Playing CF is a big key for him but it looks like he is developing the power to play a corner if needed.

  • In reply to fsufrenzy911:

    AZ Phil says Baez is "built like young Brian Urlacher" and that he is possibly the fastest player he's seen in recent memory. He will probably outgrow some of that speed though.

  • In reply to nmu’catsbball:

    He was pretty thick when I saw him a couple of years back. Not fat, just thick, muscular, so that doesn't surprise me.

  • In reply to nmu’catsbball:

    Wow, that's high praise! Definitely intrigued - seems like a serious sleeper prospect

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    In reply to fsufrenzy911:

    Jeff Baez definitely impressing...my only pause is that a) this is his 4th season of pro-ball, so he was slow to develop so far, and b) he strikes out alot. I would like to see how he does in Kane Co. before counting him a top prospect. After all, Balaguert raked at Boise as a 20-year old last year, and this year he looks like a non-prospect...

  • John,

    Love the recaps every morning - thank you for doing such a great job. On another note, are you ever going to be able to get on the road and get some one on one time with these prospects for more in depth interviews? J. Rogers got some good time with the Iowa guys last week - but I think you may do better.

  • In reply to Hoosier Gus:

    I am working on an interview right now with 3rd round pick Mark Zagunis.

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    In reply to John Arguello:

    sweet! Can't wait!

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    See if you can find a way to get some time with our new SS in Tennessee...would love to hear more about him and what he is like since we will all be swooning on him for the next 10+ years.

  • Great stuff as usual John! Its getting pretty difficult to keep track of all these great players at each level. Very fun to follow.

    I think the Dumping For Daz campaign is now in full force (which does sting more than I thought it would considering how well they were playing before the trade)

    The UA game falls on my birthday this year! Would love to get out the the park and check it out!

  • In reply to worldjordo:

    Also I just saw that Tanaka hit the 15 day DL with elbow issues!?!?1 Oh boy...

  • In reply to worldjordo:


  • In reply to JLynch2247:

    I really hope not... even though I don't like the Yankees he is still incredibly entertaining to watch. Just goes to show how much safer it is to bank on impact hitters as opposed to impact pitching...

  • In reply to worldjordo:

    Hate to see that for Tanaka, but as for the Yankees...

  • I'm loving some of the fun his team mates are having with this AS voting.

    Jake Arrieta @JArrieta34 · 2h
    The guy beat cancer and still has both testes.. Allegedly. #VoteRizzo http://cubs.com/vote

    Mike Olt @mike_olt · 2h
    He swings at pitches that hit him and still has 20 homers #voterizzo

    There's others, including some priceless pics...

  • It was a picture-perfect afternoon for a ball game in Omaha yesterday, and I was able to enjoy nine innings of well-pitched baseball before having to leave (hated to do it!) for a Northern League game in Kansas City in the company of the Kansas City Baseball Historical Society (plug), where our old friend Bob Dernier was a guest. Anyway, some observations from the I-Cubs game in Omaha:

    I can't say enough about the command Eric Joskish displayed throughout his seven frames. He spotted an 88-90 MPH fastball effectively to set up a nice assortment of sliders, changeups and occasional curveballs. He had the Omaha hitters looking uncomfortable at the plate and taking some poor hacks. His pace was really good, as very few runners reached base. He was pretty much matched pitch for pitch by John Lamb, a former highly-rated Royals prospect prior to TJ surgery; he was one of the unlucky ones whose good fastball (formerly 95+) never came back and now is learning to pitch in a similar manner as Jokish. Some of the fans were complaining about all the strikeouts/lack of offense, but not me. 22 Ks from two starters through seven innings - wow! Our old friend Casey Coleman pitched a frame against the Cubs, and was letting it loose at 95 MPH in his inning; he looked pretty good. Armando Rivero looked pretty good for the Cubs, with a lanky frame and a loose delivery, sporting a 95-MPH fastball and nice slider.

    Not much offense to report but Bryant make a couple of very good plays in the infield in the 3rd and 4th innings, including a barehanded pick and throw to first to beat a speedy Paulo Orlando on a close play. Hope to see him stick at third, but will gladly make concessions if our other middle infielders make that impossible. The other observation I was pleased to make was the sound of the ball off Javier Baez's bat when he cracked a one-out double in the third inning. Definitely caught the attention of those watching. Javy, however, immediately followe that up with a baserunning gaffe, getting doubled off second on a liner to left from Bryant. Finally, with the score still tied at 1 and leading off the 7th inning, Javy probably noticed how deep the third baseman was playing and tried to beat out a bunt, but pushed it to the pitcher. He demonstrated good speed to first, and at least made it close.

    Nothing else to report, but I considered it a privilege to see these guys play. I understand that 16 of the last 17 games between these two teams have been decided by three runs or fewer, and there were fans wearing "I-80 Rivalry" t-shirts, which is good to see. Hoping to get up to Des Moines for a couple of games before the season ends. Keep up the great work, John and Cubs Den posters.

  • In reply to kansasblackhawk:

    Thanks for the report. Do you remember what pitches Jokisch was getting his K's on? Were they mostly looking or swing and miss? I'm thinking he was spotting the slider well and was freezing hitters, but that's obviously just a guess.

  • In reply to Ghost Dawg:

    It was really a combination of fastballs and sliders. His location was so good on all his pitches that a few of the caught lookings came on fastballs set up by a previous changeup or curve.

  • In reply to kansasblackhawk:


  • In reply to kansasblackhawk:

    These are great reports Kansas. Keep em coming!

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    I realize the radar guns can be innacurate, but at least in Cincy, the gun is not showing any velocity increase for Hendricks. His FB has been 88-89, touching 91 once or twice, but mostly 89. I don't think the gun is cold either, because Bailey has been consistently 94-95 with his FB, which is about right.

    It's tough to survive in the high-80s, no matter how good your control

  • In reply to Zonk:

    Yep, Pevey was completely BS'ing about that. Hendricks' Slurve and his changeup have looked pretty good though.

  • In reply to Ghost Dawg:

    Now also maybe people will realize that when scouts, John, and others have said that Hendricks had 4-5 starter upside that it's actually a very big compliment. Becoming a solid MLB starter is huge. We have seen over the past few days first hand how guys like Wada, Beeler, and Hendricks (the best of them in my opinion) that don't have a FB they can blow by people and a nasty swing & miss "out" pitch have very little room for mistakes. They definitely can be successful but the margin for error is greatly diminished and on days where their control is off things can get ugly in a hurry with major league hitters.

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    In reply to Ghost Dawg:

    Your 100% right .

    I really like Hendricks change up and poise on the mound.

    Personally, out of the 3, I have seen this week. Wada looked the best.

    You may be right the Hendricks future is the brightest thought. He came up huge vs Jay Bruce Bruce in a big spot w two on.

  • In reply to Zonk:

    Alcantara is doing his thing though, I have very high hoped for AA, he just a dynamic player.

  • In reply to Ghost Dawg:

    wow...English is my first language...I swear.

  • In reply to Ghost Dawg:

    LOL! You no talk so good there :)

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    In reply to John Arguello:

    Him talk pretty one day?

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    In reply to Ghost Dawg:

    2 hits today, Ty Pena......tying run on 3rd w one out.....come on Castro, lets make these reds fans sweat and get Hendricks off the hook

  • Awesome debut for Hendricks in my opinion.

    It was good for him to get tested early and to see if he would settle down (which he obviously did).

    1st inning: 3 hits 3 BB's 3 ER 0 K's - 33 pitches
    2nd - 6th innings: 2 hits 1 ER 0 BB 7 K's - 62 pitches

    Hopefully the offense comes through this inning and gives him the win.

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    In reply to Average Samaritan:

    That is my thought. He was probably SO excited (and probably a little nervous too). I think his first 8 pitches were called balls. Over 1/3 of his pitches thrown were in the 1st inning. After he settled in it sounds like he did pretty well. I want to give him and Beeler at least 5 starts before I make any real judgments of their skill.

  • In reply to Joel Mayer:

    The ump also was squeezing him in the 1st inning, the WGN broadcast pitch tracker showed that a few of those called balls were actually strikes but such is life for a rookie pitcher in his 1st outing. Their was actually an article that just came out I believe that showed that "star" pitchers get a bigger strike zone called by the umps and on down the line to rookies who have the smallest strike zone to work with...it's complete BS but as long as the home plate umpire is human it will most likely continue....bring on the laser/radar equipped robots!...or if it makes people feel more comfortable just make them androids that look human...problem solved.

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    In reply to Ghost Dawg:

    Maybe I have seen "Short Circuit" 1x too many, but I don't know about laser equipped robot umpires. Though, I would guess that it would cut down on "arguing balls and strikes" as well as making for colorful ejections! LOL.

    Umping is a human sport just like the players themselves. I guess that Hendricks will just have to become a star pitcher.

  • Rizzo has slipped behind Morneau...c'mon everybody let's do this

    Everybody please go #VoteRizzo about 50 times...


  • In reply to Ghost Dawg:

    Where did you see this (out of curiosity)?

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    In reply to Ghost Dawg:

    I been sitting in front of the computer just for that reason. I really thought it was a slam dunk ( as I watch most of Rizzos games) but when I analysis the numbers, I can't be mad if rendon gets the nod. He will also help the team as he can play every infield position ( remember the game counts, hahahahah ah)


    Back to clicking for Rizzo........F Justine .....that's just wrong

  • Hendricks does have 7 K's, so unlike Beeler the hitters are not always going to hit the ball.

  • The Score (Boers and Bernstein) are calling this a watershed week for the future of the Cubs. The Trade, The Landmark Committee Meeting and the light at the end of the tunnel of prospect development. This could be the spring board into the positive future for the Cubs.

    Hopefully it all continues well.

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    In reply to Gator:

    Don't they spend most of their time hating on the Cubs? 10-15 years ago, chicago sports radio was one the best in the country.

    Now a lot of the score is anti cubs and since espn bought /merged whatever w 1000, it's been all cookie cutter and down hill ......

  • In reply to Jim Odirakallumkal:

    B and b have been on cubs bandwagon for awhile now. Fully understanding the process the cubs have committed themselves to.

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    Come on Pedro, pick up Rizzo here.

    We can't lose this game like this

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    Glad Rizzo is turning into a real leader for this team.

    Chapman was real Busch league w his antics .

    Least we know we have on guy in blue w fire in his belly whom is also sick of this losing !!!!

    I love it, lets get him some help !!

  • In reply to Jim Odirakallumkal:

    Agree 100%, Jim! Let's get Rizzo and the rest of these boys some help! Keeping Alcantara up here would be a nice start. Of course, they're gonna do it, but seems absurd to send Alcantara back to Iowa after this breakout performance today. But it just ain't fair to make Rizzo to into battle with only half a team around him.

  • AA is going off on the Redlegs today.
    Darwin... you've been Wally Pipped, buddy!!

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    Just heard Len Casper say that some people are comparing AA to JImmy Rollins. After watching him play i can see the comparison.

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    4 hits for Double A.......god I hope you guys are wrong and they don't send him down after this game.

    Cubs baseball is exciting again

  • In reply to Jim Odirakallumkal:

    I think they'll send him down to play in the AAA all-star game.

  • In reply to Jim Odirakallumkal:

    not to be a downer, but i can name another okayer who had similar sizzling start... Junior Lake. now people demanding that he is sent down.

  • In reply to Jim Odirakallumkal:

    not to be a downer, but i can name another player who had similar sizzling start... Junior Lake. now people demanding that he is sent down.

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    In reply to Csanad:

    I am not saying he's Jerome Walton or Mike trout.....just saying he's exciting something this cubs team is missing.......

    Not much speed on this team......how Mr Valbuena doesn't get an inside the park home run when outfielder was laying on the ground for 5 seconds.

  • In reply to Jim Odirakallumkal:

    LOL, that's called a "Cubbie Occurrence"

  • In reply to Csanad:

    Alcantara and Junior Lake have nothing in common...also Lake was never ranked nationally as a top prospect. Lake was always very flawed and still is.

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    In reply to Ghost Dawg:

    I was just about to post that but wanted to look some numbers up first. Junior Lake really didn't even belong in the majors last year, it was basically on a necessity

    Am I the only one thinking its time to end the Barney era?

    Lets give the kid a chance

  • In reply to Jim Odirakallumkal:

    I think that he's heading back to Iowa as planned,.... for a little while longer at least. But man that was a fun bit of offense by AA today. Would NOT mind seeing more of that.

    I think that he goes back down for two reasons,.... 1 - this was meant to give him (and the Cubs fans for that matter) a taste of what might be coming from AA, and from the other guys down there in AAA - so he can go back and both savor it himself, and so that the other guys get a direct sense of what may be coming for them as well.

    2 - IF the goal is to move Barney in trade to another team - Barney's offense has been on the rise of late,and he continues on that upswing - he both continues to bring value back to the current Cubs team with his play, and raises what they might get in return from him from a club in need a solid, defense-first IF guy.

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    In reply to Jim Odirakallumkal:

    He'd be more useful in CF where Lake is a bigger embarrassment.

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    In reply to Csanad:

    Agree with Ghost. Many, here included, that Lake's inability to take a walk or not swing at everything would be an issue.

  • Alcantara beats it out!!! 4 hits with a double, a run and 3 RBI so far... he just keeps rolling.

  • In reply to Ghost Dawg:

    Don't forget his triple

  • In reply to CubfanInUT:

    ...yep i meant to put it in, thanks, and he has another run now too!

  • In reply to Ghost Dawg:

    This is like our 6th best prospect.
    Just wait till the really good ones get here.

  • In reply to hoffpauir6:

    Exactly! AA may be the one closest to being a useful ML-level player,.... but he isn't the best one waiting in the wings.

    For that matter - Hendricks didn't look too bad either after that 1st inning. Not a TOR guy (of course) but a solid middle of the rotation guy in the making.

  • In reply to Ghost Dawg:

    What a game for Alcantara!

    eerily reminds me of the the first game that Castro had back in 2011 when he went crazy in his first game at Cincinnati.

    Maybe Cincy is a good place to break our top prospects in!

  • We should trade him.

    "Hides behind computer monitor."

  • In reply to hoffpauir6:

    For Stanton?

  • In reply to springs:

    Straight up? No way!!
    Miami needs to throw in a top pitching prospect.

  • Rizzo and Sale are going to the All Star game

  • Rizzo & Sale made All Star team. Way to go!!!!

  • AA did exactly what a prospect needs to do in their first taste of the majors, which is make the case that you belong there. Of course, he showed today he belongs there more than many of the veterans!

  • Alcantara has mastered AAA, no need to send him back. Keep him up for good now.

  • I'd love 2 tix to the game. I just sent you an email.

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    interested in the UA tickets

  • Just sent you an email about ticket request -- thanks.

  • Who thinks fujikawa becomes the closer next year?

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    In reply to bobhoop:

    I would love that.

    It would probably means the the

    1.Cubs are good and games are finally meaning something
    2. He's finally healthy
    3. He's pitching well and closing the door on the NL central !!
    4. Probably means they are trying to stretch Rondon or Ramirez to become a starter.

    All great news !!

    I know it's only the home run derby, but how could anyone not want Giancarlo Stanton even if it cost $25 million a year !

    That kid has some serious power

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