By Todd Johnson
With one simple tweet, the position player portion of the roster seems to be filled out. The outfield will consist of Schwarber, Almora, Jay, Heyward, and Szczur. The infield will be Bryant, Russell, Zobrist, Baez, and Rizzo with Contreras and Montero catching. That only leaves one bullpen spot left to be filled. It also appears that Rule V draft pick Caleb Smith will be returned to the Yankees.
FWIW as #Cubs shape roster, Maddon raved about Szczur during media session and indicated La Stella would report to minors if necessary.
— Patrick Mooney (@CSNMooney) March 25, 2017
Other Camp News
The Cubs announced that Eloy Jimenez suffered a bone bruise and will miss the next three weeks. After that, he will be put on a strength program and probably will begin to play in extended spring training before heading out to Myrtle Beach.
The home runs continue to fly out as Schwarber, Jake Arrieta, and Ian Happ all launched this week. Arrieta was of a particular note as his went 460+ feet. The Cubs also announce this week that they will be wearing special jerseys on April 10 and 12th. This “Gold Collection” is now on sale on their website.
Meanwhile, on Cubs Central….
It is “Affiliate Preview Week!” Beginning on Monday, I will post one preview a day of each of the Cubs affiliates. To begin, the Iowa Cubs start the series followed by Tennessee on Tuesday, Myrtle Beach on Wednesday, South Bend on Thursday, and Eugene closes out the series on Friday with a preview of a preview.
What has held up the previews has been fluctuation with the starting pitching rotations. Now that those have been mostly settled, Cubs Central is ready to roll out the posts.
Last fall, we posted that the Cubs had signed 18 international free agents despite limitations placed on them by Major League Baseball. This week Baseball. America published an overview of those signings by the Cubs along with 11 more players for a total of 29 players. The Cubs hit the Mexico market harder than ever before. Here is the full article, subscription required.
There are several intriguing prospects including Jeimer Candelario’s cousin, Jeinser Brete, a 17-year-old infielder. Expect to see 20-year-old reliever Manuel Rodriguez begin at South Bend while most of the others will be playing for the Cubs’ Dominican Summer League teams.
Affiliate Previews Every Day
An Interview with Scott Kornberg