Affiliate Update: Pelicans Getting off to a Rough Start

For the first 10 games of the season, you could have called the Myrtle Beach Pelicans a hot mess. At that point they were 2-8. They had pitching woes, hitting troubles, and overall inability to properly field and throw the ball. There was one point in that week where I thought,
“Well, it can only go up from here.”

And it did, thankfully.  

The week of the 14th through the 20th saw them go 4-3 thanks in part to some fresh blood in the starting rotation and three new guys at the plate. Oscar de la Cruz, Zach Davis, and Cam Belago all came aboard. They were Cubs Central’s team of the week on the 21st. It was a refreshing change and quite the turnaround.

The Stalwarts
In spite of the poor start, there were a couple of good performances. 2018 second round pick, starting pitcher Paul Richan. had success over his first three starts. He had a 1.32 ERA with 7 Ks in just 13.2 IP. and he had not giving up a home run either. 

Ryan Kellogg has been outstanding in long relief and whatever role the Pelicans have asked of him. In fact, he should be the first one promoted to Tennessee very shortly.

I also like what I’m seeing from Javier Assad  who got off to a great start last year at South Bend but kind of weathered down the stretch. Hopefully, he’s in much better shape to withstand the rigors of a second 140 game season. He has a 2.77 ERA in 3 starts.

In the bullpen, Ben Hecht has been very good for the Pelicans. In 8 outings, he’s posted a 1.80 ERA with 12 Ks. Jesus Camargo has been very good the last two weeks. His ERA has gone from 6.75 to under 3.00 in just 3 appearances.

As for the hitting, Tyler Payne, a.k.a. Teddy Payne, is a  stabilizing force in the lineup whether he’s catching, playing first base,  or is the designated hitter. Carlos Sepulveda has been up and down usually fluctuating between 250 and 300 in his batting average. As for MIguel Amaya, he got off to a great start, cooled off, and has heated back up again. Amaya has 4 HRs so far. Teammate Aramis Ademan also looks to be much stronger than last year. He’s hitting over .273 with a walk rate of almost 20% and an on-base percentage of 404. That’s a very good sign.

There are three guys who I think are showing an excellent approach, but the balls are just not falling in for them. I love to watch Jimmy Herron hit all day long. DJ Wilson and Luke Reynolds have good days and bad days. Hopefully, the ball will start finding some holes here in the next few weeks as they try to get their averages and on base percentage is up.

Manager Steve Lerud has his hands full this spring and summer. The key for him should be the long view of fully developing these pitchers and hitters over the course of the year, not just today or tomorrow.

Hopefully, the rest of the season is like the last 10 days where the Pelicans have gone 5-5 and have shown glimpses of putting it all together. There are some elite prospects who are at Myrtle Beach and I’m looking forward to seeing how this team bounces back in May.


The Midweek Report – How Are the Cubs’ Top Prospects Doing?

Today marks the seventh day and the end of the first week of the MiLB season. It’s been an interesting week of Carl Edwards and Ian Happ watching, prospect examination, and wondering what is happening with some players.

If one were to analyze performance of the top ten prospects on my top 21 list, you would get a mixed bag of results.

#1 – Nico is walking a lot. His reputation has preceded him and he had a decent first week. He’s only played four games, but he’s humming along with a 25% walk rate and a .438 OBP.

#2  – Miguel Amaya – Right now, he’s the major run producer at Myrtle Beach. When he’s on, the Pelicans will be in games. When he’s off, they struggle.

#3 – Adbert Alzolay – Hopefully, he could be ready by May, but it is more likely the middle of late part.

#4 – Cole Roederer – He has good days and days. He’s just 19, so be patient. I like that Buddy Bailey sticks with him in the leadoff spot for now. He went 2/5 with 2 RBI on Monday night.

#5 – Brennen Davis – He’s in extended spring training and likely headed to Eugene in June.

#6 – Brailyn Marquez came out dealing for South Bend gassing it up to 98. He’s still getting stretched out but he struck out 7 on 59 pitches in 3.2 IP. It was stunning to watch him attack hitters.

#7 – Justin Steele, like Marquez, is getting stretched out. In his first start, he overcame a rough first inning and threw 3.2 innings of 1 run ball as struck 4 while walking 3.

#8 – Aramis Ademan – He still looks overmatched at the plate. At one point his average dipped to .067 after 16 ABs before a 2 run single last night got him off the schnide.

#9 – Richard Gallardo – He will likely be in Mesa later this spring.

#10 – Cory Abbott – He looked strong in his first start going 5 with 2 Ks and 1 run allowed.

While these might be my top 10 prospects, there have been some other surprises and good performances this week.

Iowa – Zack Short has been hitting and getting on base while Donnie Dewees and Philip Evans are both off to strong starts at the plate. It was nice to see Trevor Clifton make his season debut Monday as he looked good getting stretched out while throwing 3 innings with no earned runs.

Tennessee – It looks like this team could be the team to watch this spring. Right now, everybody’s hitting and everybody’s pitching well. With both Thompson and Hatch looking strong in their first starts, I feel sorry for Southern League hitters every night.

Myrtle Beach – At one point, only 2 players had averages above .215. It’s been a rough week for the Pelicans’ hitters. And the pitching still has a lot of things they need to improve. Manager Steve Lerud and his staff have their work cut out for them..

South Bend – Nelson Velazquez and Jonathan Sierra look like they could be beasts, especially later in the year. I love what Levi Jordan brings to the ballfield, but three relievers are stealing the show. Jeff Passantino, Zach Mort, and Riley McCauley shut down the opposition in relief every other night. I also like what I see in the rotation from Cam Sanders and Riley Thompson who both have live arms.

Happ and Edwards
As for Ian Happ, it depends on the night. It’s a very small sample size, but he’s striking out a lot in 6 games and has only walked once. It’s either an 0/4 or a 2/4 kind of thing happening. He does have 7 RBI, but those 9 Ks in 28 ABs are a scary. As for Carl Edwards, he struck out 3 of the 4 hitters he faced on Monday night.

Could Be Heating It Up
I am still waiting for a few bats to kick in at the plate. Luke Reynolds had his best night last night going 2/4 for Myrtle Beach I also think Nico will continue to improve the longer he stays at AA. He will rise to the challenge. He’s been off the last two days for a rainout and a travel day.

Week 2 should sort out some more things.

The Weekly: The MiLB Season Kicks Off and in HD

After 4 games, the Chicago Cubs looked to be a hot mess at 1-3,. My only thought was that it could not get much worse. Yup, I got that one wrong and it looks like there is no end in sight as the bullpen continues to implode night after night. This playing like it’s October in March and April is not working out so well. However, last night’s win was a step in the right direction. The bullpen still needs a lot of work.

Meanwhile…The MiLB Roundup
The first week of the minor-league season is always exciting as you get to see a lot of players in new uniforms for the very first time. I’m sure after a week, the novelty will wear off for me and their skills will come to the forefront. 

The most notable change about the MiLB experience is a massive  visual change. All the Cub affiliates went HD. It has made a huge difference in watching the games. I can now tune into Tennessee and actually see the ball off the bat as it flies through the air. 

While it’s only been three games, Miguel Amaya looks to be refreshed and rejuvenated after wearing down a bit in the second half last year. Every time he hits the ball, he is hitting it very hard with authority all over the field. The young 20-year-old catcher looks to be making mincemeat out of the Carolina League as he’s put up an OPS of 1.429 and wRC+ of 241.

Thomas Hatch was very impressive on Thursday night. He showed a smooth delivery and against a team of elite prospects in Mississippi from the Atlanta Braves’ system. He went five scoreless innings and struck out seven. South Bend’s Cam Sanders threw his first two innings with some effort and location issues as his effortless delivery got a little extra run the first couple innings. He eventually settled down. In the fourth and the fifth, he looked to be in sync with his fastball and a developing curve which my friend John really liked. He did not give up a run in 5 innings of work. Tennessee’s Cory Abbott also looked very good on Friday as he gave up one run over five innings with two Ks.

On Saturday, Keegan Thompson of Tennessee pitched the gem of the week. He threw 5 innings and did not allow a hit or run while striking out 8. His curve was top notch as he was putting every pitch where he wanted.

In the bullpen, I don’t know how he does it, but Jeffrey Passantino got some of the ugliest swings I’ve seen in awhile in three innings on Friday night. He struck out six and used a sharp 12 to 6 curve just baffled the West Michigan hitters. Also in relief that night, fellow South Bend Cub Riley McCauley looked vicious in a 1-2-3 inning. On Saturday, Ryan Kellogg and Ryan Lawlor pitched well, too. Both went 3.1 scoreless IP with 4 Ks.

As for the opening weekend of games, the Minor League System…
Iowa – (2-1) : It’s good to see Donnie Dewees back in action.  Zack Short looks good at the plate (.364). He’s hitting and getting on base. The pitching for the I-Cubs is also off to a rocky start this season. As for Mr. Happ, I will be back with a post on him tomorrow. but for now, he leads the system in RBI after three games with 6.

Tennessee – (2-1): They held their own against a team of elite prospects in Mississippi. Nico looks to be walking a bit more already this year than he did all of last year. Charcer Burks has been playing really well in the field, on the bases, and at the plate working deep counts, drawing walks, and getting in pitcher’s heads. I also love to watch Ian Rice give professional ABs every time. But Jared Youngs 2 HRs in 3 days have been awesome. Still, Young has plenty of work to do as he’s only has 3 hits in 3 games.

Myrtle Beach – (1-2): This team has some serious defensive issues that they’re going to need to get rectified soon. As for the hitting, DJ Wilson is off to a good start as is Johnny Betancourt. Bryan Hudson had a rough first couple of innings but would clean it up up going five strong with 6 Ks and 2 ERs. Hopefully, he can get some consistency this year from start to start.

South Bend – (2-1): What I’ve always liked about following South Bend is you get a really long look at some of the guys they took in the previous draft. You also get your first look at the pitchers they took without any inning restrictions on them like they have in playing for Eugene. Jonathan Sierra, Andy Weber, Fidel Mejia, and Nelson Velazquez all look good so far, but Tyler Durna looks much more impressive than anyone on the team – great ABs, approach, and patience.

It looks as though that career of Will Remillard has shifted to the front office. He is officially going to be doing “research and development” for the Tennessee Smokies. I’m sorry things didn’t work out for him as a player as he was one of my favorite players in 2014 for the Kane County Cougars.

International Free Agency News
The Orioles returned pitcher Pedro Araujo to the Cubs as they were not going to keep him on the 25 man roster. The Cubs then optioned him to Iowa and quickly traded him back to the Orioles for $750,000 worth of international bonus pool money. This could be a big game changer for the Cubs.

The Cubs have to spend that money before June 15. The Cubs could go one of three ways. According to Arizona Phil, they could use it all to land a big fish like Cuban shortstop Yolbert Sanchez. He also said they might be interested in going piecemeal for recently certified free agents from Mexico like P Jaime Melendez, P Jose Angel Valenzuela, and/or C Fernando Villalobos. The Cubs could also  just go buy in bulk down in the Dominican.

Draft News
My four part 2019 draft series drops on Tuesday this week. I’ll be taking a look at a few college hitters. It’s called “Examining #27.”

In addition, MLB announced the final draft order and bonus pools this week. The Cubs get $5,826,900 total with $2,570,000 of that for the first round pick, $1,050,000 for the second at #64, and then it drops off to $565.600 at #104. Then the Cubs pick at 132, 162, etc.all the way up to 1212.

Be sure to check out the MiLB Players of the Day Awards page daily by using the menu at the top of the page.

Players of the Week

Card of the Week
The baseball cards have been flowing in this week. There are lots of good ones to check out over on the Facebook Page.
Pic by Rikk Carlson

2019 Affiliate Preview: Myrtle Beach Could Be a Jekyll and Hyde Kind of Team

Photo by Todd Johnson

Last year, the Myrtle Beach Pelicans struggled to get things going at the plate. In the first half they went 34-36 before a second half meltdown of 27-42. Despite having one of the best rotations in the Carolina League, good pitching can only do so much. When it comes to 2019, it could be a good year or it might be a struggle until roles are figured out.

The Certainties
Miguel Amaya is definitely the number one prospect to watch for the Pelicans. He showed quite a bit of power in the first half last year and wore down quite a bit in the second half as he caught 80% of the games in the heat of July and August in South Bend. He is more than likely to spend all year catching in the Carolina League at the age of 20. He should be OK powerwise on the road, but hitting HRs at home will be a challenge.

Aramis Ademan had a very disappointing season at the plate last year at Myrtle Beach. He should be returning with a bit more focus and a bit more muscle as he tries to work his way to AA Tennessee, even though he’s only 20 years old. He is still an outstanding defender at SS. I wonder if he will see some time at second this spring? That will be something to watch.

One player who I love is 2B Carlos Sepulveda. He has missed most of the past two summers with a shoulder injury and has been healthy and playing this spring. Now 22, the youngster should be able to return to his hitting prowess when he was a top 10 prospect while at South Bend in 2016. He is good enough to dominate there quickly.

Outfielder Jimmy Herron looks to be another guy to get a good look at. The 2018 third round pick out of Duke is pretty good with a stick in his hand. Now that he’s coming into a season fresh, he should be focused and ready to go. Fellow 2018 draft pick Luke Reynolds has an approach that might be heads and shoulders above most of the league and should do him well. It looks like Luke will be playing 3B to start this year. 

I also really like utility player Grant Fennell. He can play almost anywhere in the field and he has a great approach. An undrafted free agent, he was recommended to the Cubs by then Eugene manager Steve Lerud, who is now the skipper at Myrtle Beach. In 41 games, he hit 4 HRs with an .849 OPS. His ability to play all the corner outfield and infield spots will put that bat in the lineup most every day.

As for starting pitching, it was almost an uncertainty until the last week of camp. In a stunning move, pitcher Alex Lange will be returning to Myrtle Beach. My first thought when I saw that was, “Oh, he’s going to be pissed!” With the logjam of starting pitching the Cubs have, Lange did not get bumped up due to the depth. As a result, I feel sorry for Carolina League hitters this spring. Lange is one of the most competitive arms the Cubs have. Then again, this might be the thing that motivates Lange up the ladder as he gets his fastball command and release point down to match his plus-plus curve and plus changeup, which he developed last year. 

The Uncertainties
On the mound, the starting rotation is still a bit up in the air but my guy to click this year is Erling Moreno. Now at 22, he looks to be fully healthy and ready to go after dealing with injuries the past two summers at South Bend.

The question all spring has been who is going to join Moreno in the Carolina League. Erich Uelmen has been sidelined most of the spring and so has lefty #1 pick Brendon Little. 

Bryan Hudson will be returning after an up and down year in 2018 at Myrtle Beach. Hudson is still only 21 and has flashed some great moments for weeks at a time. He needs to stretch those weeks out into months. He needs to be the ground ball machine when all know he can be.

Paul Richan, a second round pick from 2018, will be skipping South Bend. He has great secondaries that will do well in Carolina. The issue for Richan, as it is with Lange, is how well his fastball is going to do to offset his plus offspeed stuff.

Outfielders D.J. Wilson is back and hopefully he can stay healthy this year. He has a ton of talent that he’s only been able to put together in small spurts. The same is true for Kevonte Mitchell. The behemoth outfielder looks to rebound coming off a disappointing 2018. You can add in 1B Wladimir Galindo to that mix as well as a guy who is looking to finally put it all together. 

The makeup of the Pelicans’ bullpen will be something to see, too. Garrett Kelly will likely return along with Ryan Kellogg and Tyler Peyton. Newcomer Brian Glowicki was a bulldog for South Bend and did not allow a run the last six weeks of 2018. The logjam of prospects also holds true for relievers as well as starters. Right now, righty Brendan King will do some starting while Little and Uelmen are out, but King and his plus curve could be back in the pen later this spring.

First Prospect to Be Promoted
It is not going to be a reliever. It is not going to be a starting pitcher. SS Aramis Ademan has the best shot considering that Nico Hoerner could be the first one promoted from Tennessee. Then again, if Ademan’s bat is not ready, that nixes that idea. If not, then I’d have to go with Luke Reynolds. I love his approach and I think his bat will do fine at Myrtle Beach. I don’t know how much power Luke is going  to display, but he will most definitely hit and get on a base at a high clip.

Iowa Preview
Tennessee Preview

Pre-Season Cubs MiLB All-Star Team – Part 1: Position Players Locked In

By Todd Johnson

This is going to be a very weird All-Star Team to make this year, particularly when it comes to pitchers. Because of the depth the Cubs have in pitching, I decided to make this a two part series this year. Today will be the hitters.

Considering that some of the Cubs’ most talented young prospects won’t be playing until mid June, it limits who will be on the list. As a result, there will be no Brennen Davis, Reivaj Garcia, or Luis Verdugo on here. Still, there’s plenty of talent headed to South Bend, Myrtle Beach, Tennessee, and Iowa to fill up a squad.

Position Players were fairly easy to slot in. It did not require much thinking or processing. At one stage, I wanted to include some sleepers at each position, but then I thought better. So, let’s get to it.

C – Miguel Amaya, Jhonny Pereda
The two most touted backstops will be at Myrtle Beach and Tennessee, respectively. Here’s the cool thing though, both will be on the 40 man roster at the end of 2019. It’s kind of strange to add two catchers at one time, but the system does not want to lose either. I look forward to seeing how Amaya’s power develops this year and what Pereda can do behind the plate at AA after throwing out almost 40% of base runners last year.

1B – Jared Young
Somehow, I don’t think 1B is where he is going to play most of this year. Based on how he ended last year and where he is playing in spring training, the OF will be his place of operations in AA Tennessee. Originally a 2B, Young shifted to first last spring and was the Cubs MiLB player of the Year in 2018 and he has a chance to repeat this year. The goal might be 20 dingers. If he hits well in the first half, Iowa will await in late June. Then, his power will only amplify in the Pacific Coast League.

2B – Andy Weber
He basically plays every position in the infield and at a high level. I love his calmness at the plate. He’s the most reserved hitter I have seen in terms of mood and plate discipline since Mark Zagunis. Weber also has a calmness about the situation that implies a very high baseball IQ about what needs to be done in that at-bat. Joe Maddon is calling that type of situational hitting “opportunity hitting.” Weber is amazing at it. I would love to see him at South Bend for a bit but I think he will skip and head to Myrtle Beach. 

SS – Nico Hoerner
Should be Tennessee bound. That’s all I am going to say. His play speaks volumes.

3B – Trent Giambrone
His spring has moved him to the front of the line for players from Iowa to head to Chicago. His power against right-handed pitching is devastating and Joe loves him, too.

OF – Cole Roederer, Nelson Velazquez, Jimmy Herron
All three of these guys are such different players. Herron was the late add-on as Mark Zagunis made the 25-man roster. Herron brings great discipline at the plate. It will be interesting to see how he does in his first full season and how much power he actually brings to the batter’s box.

As for Velazquez, he improved his approach dramatically at Eugene last year. He started off the spring playing with South Bend, was injured, went to South Bend and was as horrible as his 28 wRC+ suggests. It took him a bit but he was the Cubs August Player of the Month for the second straight year. He finished Eugene with a 115 wRC+.

However, the guy everyone wants to see have at it this year is Cole Roederer. All of 19, the young lefty centerfielder can hit for power and average, has speed, a good glove, and an improving arm. It is the combination of all five skills that are exciting the fan base. That combo is something Cub fans haven’t seen in a few years at the lower levels.

DH – Luke Reynolds, Zack Short
Reynolds’ bat and approach are special. So much so that he could skip South Bend and play at Myrtle Beach. A 127 wRC+ at Eugene belies his ability to pick up the ball. I don’t think he’s long for the Carolina League either. He will turn 24 soon.

As for Short, he has been as consistent a hitter that the Cubs have had the past few years posting wRC+ grades of 118, 136, 124, and 123 from Eugene to Tennessee. Now at Iowa, Short is putting himself into contention as a bench player, but even more importantly, a guy who is an outstanding defender at SS.

I am sure there will be some breakout performances this spring as guys string together a couple of great months. I can foresee catcher Alexander Guerra being one of those along with Delvin Zinn and Fidel Mejia at South Bend. I would love to see Wladimir Galindo finally rake and hope that Carlos Sepulveda returns after missing most of the past 2 seasons. It could be a very fun and surprising first half.

I will be back tomorrow with the starting pitchers and relievers.

MLB Pipeline’s Top 30 Goes Big with Young Cubs

By Todd Johnson

When MLB Pipeline announced the release date of February 21 for their top 30 Cubs prospect list, I was not quite sure what to expect. Normally Jim Callis and Jonathan Mayo are pretty conservative when it comes to player movement within a list. Considering Miguel Amaya was at #94 on their top 100 followed by Nico Hoerner at #100, they were going to be at the top of the list.

When last season ended, though, several young prospects had shot into their top 30. Brailyn Marquez was at #4 and Nico was at #6 while Cole Roederer and Brennen Davis were back-to-back at #14 and #15. Callis did state earlier that Tyson Miller and Richard Gallardo would be the two biggest movers on the list.

There were a few things I was interested in seeing about their list. Here’s the full list. Let’s get to the answers.

1. How much impact will the 2018 draft have on the list?
A total of 6 2018 draft picks made the list. While Nico naturally lead off the list soon followed by Cole Roeder at 5 and Brennen Davis at 7. I was still surprised to see Paul RIchan at 18 but I was ecstatic to see RHP Riley Thompson get on along with 2B/SS Andy Weber. Makybe Luke Reynolds can join them later this summer.

2. What would be the ratio of pitching to hitting be?
13 hitters made the list vs. 17 pitchers. It is still a bit lopsided, but most of the hitters haven’t seen South Bend yet. That should help the future perk up a bit. Even though he’s only played rookie ball, the insertion of Reivaj Garcia at 21 was cool to see. I wonder if he will be good enough to see South Bend at 17 years of age?

3. Would Pipeline still hold onto Duane Underwood and Oscar de la Cruz in the top 10?
They both wound up in the 20s. Trevor Clifton and DJ Wilson also fell off the list along with a couple of other pitchers and Mark Zagunis. Both Underwood and de la Cruz will likely end up in the bullpens this summer. Doing so could accelerate de la Cruz who has had injury after injury. As for Clifton and Duane, they are both still relatively young. I also was a bit surprised to not see Duncan Robinson and Matt Swarmer make the list. I think both of them could surprise some more this summer at AAA Iowa.

4. Who is going to be the biggest mover on the list?
Richard Gallardo shot up from 27 to 14 but Yovanny Cruz went from nothing to 15. It could be even more interesting to see who moves in the list they put out after the draft. RIley Thompson and Revaj Garcia are my picks to explode this spring.

I liked the turnover and emphasis on youth, but there are some players that Callis and Mayo are still struggling to let go off the list. That’s just me being picky. But since the departure of Eloy, Dylan Cease, and Isaac Paredes, things appear to be looking up with this collection of youth.

In other words, things appear to have bottomed out. The Cubs will still get more bodies this summer as things begin to move forward.

At the end of a separate article, Jim Callis graded out the best tools for Cubs Prospects.

Hit: 60 — Nico Hoerner
Power: 55 — Brennen Davis (Nelson Velazquez)
Run: 65 — Brennen Davis
Arm: 60 — Luis Verdugo (Jhonny Pereda, Andy Weber)
Defense: 60 — Miguel Amaya
Fastball: 70 — Riley Thompson
Curveball: 60 — Adbert Alzolay (Riley Thompson)
Slider: 55 — Yovanny Cruz (four others tied at 55)
Changeup: 60 — Jose Albertos
Control: 55 — Paul Richan (Cory Abbott, Keegan Thompson)

A Saturday Surprise – Keith Law Drops His Top Cubs List

By Todd Johnson

I got up today just like any other Saturday enjoying the fact that I got to sleep in and that my dogs let me. I booted around for a little bit, fed the dogs, and decided I would head to DeKalb get my medicine. When I stopped to eat breakfast on the way home, I took my phone out and I got a nice little Saturday surprise when I saw that Keith Law published his top Cubs prospect listUsually, these kinds of things don’t happen on the weekend. So, let’s take a look. The link does require a subscription. 

About a week ago, Law ranked the Cubs as having the number 29 farm system in the minors. It’s not that he doesn’t have a high regard for the Cubs, rather it’s that he doesn’t see a lot of high-end prospects right now. The Cubs currently don’t have a lot of prospects who contain that star quality that Law wants to see in a system. That could change over the next two summers. Still, I was looking forward to seeing just exactly who he put in his list.

It’s not a surprise who was at number one as Miguel Amaya made Law’s top 100 at 91 a couple weeks ago. And it’s no surprise that Nico Hoerner was at number two as he was included in Law‘s next 10 prospects.

A lot of the usual suspects filled up positions three through ten. The list included Brailyn Marquez, Adbert, Brennen Davis, Cole Roederer, and Aramis Ademan. I was mildly surprised to see Oscar de la Cruz still in the top 10 along with Erich Uelmen, who had a rough second half at Myrtle Beach.

The two biggest surprises were the inclusion of Matt Swarmer on the list and the fact that Law ranked Brennen Davis ahead of Cole Roederer. I can easily see why Law did that. Roederer does have a much higher floor while Davis’ talents are just being tapped into now that he plays baseball full time. Scouts do rave about Davis’ athleticism.

Law did go on to discuss a myriad number of pitchers in the system including Alex Lange, Tyson Miller, Yovanny Cruz, Justin Steele, Keegan Thompson, Brendon Little, Duncan Robinson, and Michael Rucker. He also professed to the talents of outfielder Nelson Velazquez, but held off on coronating the young outfielder as a prospect of the future.

There’s only one major prospect list remaining and that is MLB Pipeline’s. According to the schedule, it’ll be published the 21st February.

I’ve been keeping track of all the major prospect list rankings and it’s interesting to see the variance of where people are slotted. Here are the point totals so far with just one list left.