2009 Opening Day Minor League Rosters


C - Mark Johnson, Chris Robinson

INF - Andres Blanco, Matt Matulia, Luis Rivas, Nate Spears, Bobby Scales, Jake Fox

OF - Sam Fuld, Doug Deeds, So Taguchi, Jason Dubois, Brad Snyder

SP - Jose Ascanio, Mitch Atkins, Esmalian Caridad, Jeff Samardzija, Randy Wells

RP - Justin Berg, Jessie Estrada, Chad Fox, Kevin Hart, J.R. Mathes, Greg Reinhard, Jeff Stevens, Jason Waddell

That starting rotation is according to the press release and it mentions that Mitch Atkins will get Iowa's opening day start. Also, Triple A and Double A rosters should max out at 24 (according to AZ Phil at least) so there's a good chance two players are headed to the DL right away unless there's been a rule change. Then of course, why wouldn't they just sit back in extended spring training?


C - Welington Castillo, Steve Clevenger

INF - Darwin Barney, Tony Thomas, Jonathan Mota, Matt Camp, Blake Lalli, Kyle Reynolds.

OF - Jim Adduci, Brandon Guyer, Richie Robnett, Ty Wright

SP- James Russell, Hung-Wen Chen, Casey
Coleman, Jay
Jackson, Casey Lambert (link)

RP - Todd Blackford, John Gaub, Alex Maestri, Jeremy Papelbon, Blake Parker, Vince Perkins,
Jayson Ruhlman, Brian Schlitter

25 total for 24 supposed roster spots, so something will have to give.


C- Mark Reed, Robinson Chirinos

INF - Russ Canzler, Starlin Castro, Jovan Rosa, Marwin Gonzalez, Nathan Samson, Marquez Smith

OF - Tyler Colvin, Drew Rundle, Dylan Johnston, Jonathan Wyatt

P- Alberto Albuquerque, David Cales, Rafael Dolis, James Leverton, Marcos Mateo, Dan McDaniel, Craig Muschko, Jake Muyco, Dustin Sasser, Ryan Searle, Luke Sommer, Steve Vento, Henry Williamson


C - Luis Flores, Mario Mercedes

INF - Rebel Ridling, Josh Harrison, Junior Lake, Ryan Flaherty, Josh
Vitters, David Macias

OF - Cliff Andersen, Kyler Burke, Tony Campana, Nelson

P - Chris Archer, Jeffrey
Beliveau, Ryan Buchter, Alberto Cabrera, Chris Carpenter, Erik Hamren, Marcus
Hatley, Chris Huseby, Kevin Kreier, Mike Perconte, Jose Pina, Aaron Shafer, Josh Whitlock

Last year's top pick Andrew Cashner looks like he'll stay back in Arizona for extended spring training still dealing with his oblique injury he suffered early on in camp. The mysterious case of Jordan Latham remains...mysterious. I was told he was released by Steve Holley at Inside the Ivy. Then when he ran his own story mentioning it (it's been edited since), the Cubs and particularly Latham's family freaked out a bit and Steve was assured that he wasn't released. Yet, he's not on any rosters suggesting he's staying back in extended spring training in Arizona. But for a kid with a 2.63 minor league ERA over two seasons and pitching in Daytona last year, that's an odd choice unless there's an injury of some sort...or possibly some personal issues that put him behind others.


Soriano, Theriot, Lee, Bradley , Ramirez, Johnson, Soto, Fontenot, Dempster


Matsui, Rodriguez, Berkman, Lee, Tejada, Blum, Pence,  Bourne, Wandy

Fontenot getting to start in the RH batting lineup... a breakthrough. Go 'not!

Rob, are you sure about Ascanio starting in Iowa? Seems like they'd put Mathes in the rotation as filler and let Ascanio develop as a late inning RP, since that's his future in the big leagues. Or maybe they just want him to work on a 3rd pitch?

I would think Iowa would only carry 4 OFs, not 5, so maybe they will just release Taguchi or Dubois.

Thanks, Rob!

I'm interested to see how both Ryan Searle and Brandon Guyer do. Am I right in that they're both "skipping" a level (Guyer bypassing Daytona, Searle skipping Peoria)?

And is it true that they're trying out Casey Lambert as a starter? (This might explain why he didn't jump to Iowa after a strong half-season at AA).

And I guess I haven't been paying attention-- what happened to Tiggy? (I know he put up some shizzletastic numbers last year)

Since nobody answered you yet, Tiggy is listed on the Rochester Red Wings (AAA) roster.

Thanks, Navigator.

regarding Lambert and Ascanio starting...

that's what the press releases said, doesn't make sense to me to be honest....

Rob, whats the deal with listing Samninja 4th in the I-Cubs rotation? Don't give me that "alphabetical order" bullshit, i'm onto your tricks!

Thanks for the run down, now let's watch the cubs shell Wandy

Is there a position player on the Iowa roster who can remotely help the big club if they're called up?

Man, as good as Soriano looked yesterday is as bad as he looks today. Going for the Golden Sombrero next time up.

Good call manny.

Game tying home run. Golden Sombrero.

Almost the same thing.

I didn't say he was going to get the Golden Sombrero, just that he was going for it. Of course with LaToya on the mound we all knew a HR was a better shot...:)

I have a partial list of those starting out in EXTST. Opitz,Brenly,Jones,Calvert,Keedy,Hoorelbeke,Sontag,Weimer,Kemp,Cerda,Watkins,Mattheus,Sosa,Soto,Cashner.

Good call on Soriano Manny...

What call did I make?

Cubs lose. Back to .500.

- Dempster. A very good start. More than kept the team in game. Too bad the offense couldn't come through.
- Soriano. Another HR. And it was a BOMB off Latoya Hawkins.
- Bullpen. Held Houston scoreless for 3 over innings giving their offense a chance to win it. Though Gregg hasn't looked great giving up a run yesterday and an inherited run tonight.

- Soriano. 3K's and an error. Luckily the HR made us forget about the bad.

- Offense. Just did not click tonight. Theriot did have 2 hits, but offense only got 1 run outside of Soriano's HR.

Let's go get them tomorrow and win the series. Hopefully Lilly can turn things around and start to get on track. Go Cubs!

I can only hope the manny post-game review becomes a regular feature on this blog.

"I can only hope the manny post-game review becomes a regular feature on this blog."

Did you write that in Comic Sans font? I can't tell.

File "Milton Bradley" under "spring training stats don't mean shit"

Be good if he got a hit before they open at Wrigley. Otherwise -- Jacques II

I still don't like closers who "pitch to contact".

Amazing stat -- Cubs haven't been 2-0 since 1995.

But, hey -- the Bears still got Jay Cutler.

File "Milton Bradley" under "spring training stats don't mean shit"

Or, instead, you could file "Milton Bradley" under "2 games don't mean shit."

It was weird to see Gregg in there in that situation. Marmol should have gotten the call, and then we use Gregg if we ever take the lead. Gregg should only pitch at the start of an inning, not with inherited runners. Looks like it could be a tightrope walk in the 9th with Gregg night in and night out! He too looked dynamite in ST!!

Well, sure, if you want to go all "rational" on me.

How about Hawkins being 0-2 on Soriano and he throws him a fastball down the middle? 10 cent head-glad we don't have him around anymore...

Yeah, but with his stuff you'd think he could be a closer for somebody. I can't believe nobody has ever given that dude a shot?

The Cubs have a tendency to push players through the system quickly and I believe this can (and has, though no great examples come quickly to mind) hurt certain players. This year Starlin Castro, one of our better prospects, is moving from Rookie ball at Mesa at 19 years old to High A ball at Daytona. Marwin Gonzalez, another young SS, is moving from Boise to Daytona. Meanwhile, Ryan Flaherty, a 22 year old who played in big time college ball, is going from Boise to low A ball at Lansing.

Similarly, Brandon Guyer finally got healthy and started producing in the second half of last season. Instead of bringing him along slowly and moving him up one level, the Cubs push him up to AA (skipping Daytona).

I expect Castro, Guyer and Gonzalez will struggle, though have hope and excitement that they excel. I think there is much higher risk from these quick movements, such as that a player will lose confidence and/or develop bad habits while struggling, without much benefit (if he dominates at a certain level, he can be promoted, which is a boost to confidence).

Any thoughts?

One thing to keep in mind,especially with the latin guys. Peoria is cold this time of year. Maybe the Cubs think they will have a better chance to get off to get starts in a warm weather situation, as opposed to freezing in Peoria with the rest of the guys.
This was mentioned as a reason that Josh Vitters might also start in Daytona this year.

I suspect that if Gonzalez or Castro struggle in Daytona. They will head to Peoria once the weather heats up. Just a hunch.

As for Guyer, he is in the same situation that Marquez Smith is in. He is already 23 years old. He needs to be moving up through the ranks a little quicker than the other guys if he wants to be considered a prospect. So maybe starting him in AA is the Cubs way of saying "Move forward or Get out of the way". Again, just a hunch.

Re comments 25 & 26.

What great comments. Absolutely the core reason I like TCR so much. Thoughtful stuff I never would have considered.

It's hard to figure their thinking on moving or not moving players. You have a big time 2-way college player like Jericho Jones who turns down being picked in the 3rd round (as a pitcher) so he can take his shot at hitting and being a position player ( Cubs 20th round pick) By the way, the Dodgers clocked him 92-96 in their pre-draft tryout. So he leads the AZL in hitting for most of the summer ( and falls off somewhat in August)....he reports to spring training and bats over .400 and holds his own in the AA games.....he wasn't promoted last summer to Boise and he was not promoted to Peoria or Daytona this week. Go figure......he has the highest power rating (97) of any outfielder in the Cubs system.Guyer needs to be moving on up.....he has the tools and should rise to the promotion. I think moving Starlin Castro that far up is a big mistake......there will be some players that will not rise to the level they're starting at so we will see some shuffling around of rosters after a few weeks.

Submitted by Dr. aaron b on Wed, 04/08/2009 - 11:53am.

As for Guyer, he is in the same situation that Marquez Smith is in. He is already 23 years old. He needs to be moving up through the ranks a little quicker than the other guys if he wants to be considered a prospect. So maybe starting him in AA is the Cubs way of saying "Move forward or Get out of the way". Again, just a hunch.


AARON: 23 is the most-common age for players at A+ (like Daytona), 24 is the most-common age for players at AA, and 25 is the most-common age for players at AAA.

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  • Stockpiling young talent isn't only for trading for someone like Chapman though. Even with an elite closer winning the World Series is basically a crap shoot so the key is to get to the playoffs as much as possible and not just mortgage everything on one year. Once you get there an elite bullpen certainly helps but the playoffs can be won by one hitter or starting pitcher getting hot (Murphy, Molina, Baumgardner) and a closer might not be able to stop that.

    johann 16 min 28 sec ago view
  • I'm also not crazy about press convictions. As the police report noted, there were no marks on the lady in question. There's a TMZ link (of course) to her police pictures, as well.

    I think the only way this trade goes real bad is if Cubbery intervenes and Chapman is suddenly bad for some reason.

    Old and Blue 19 min 49 sec ago view
  • I am right there with you closing in on 60.

    I don't care that much about "mortgaging" one player who is not only blocked by two guys, but is not ready to hit the majors for at least a couple years.

    There is no reason why this team, this year, can't have a real shot at something NONE of us have experienced.

    Further, I don't feel that even if they fall short that they have ruined their farm system.

    I have made my opinion clear here, with others, Warren was shit on the Cubs save one spot start.

    The E-Man 1 hour 49 min ago view
  • Trading for Warren, Warren sucking, getting Warren back for Chapman plus 3 prospects, sounds like Revenge of The Yankees on the former Boston executive. Old rivalries never die.

    I pray to the heavens above Chapman doesn't suck for some reason, or he'll be booed out of town faster than a Todd Hundley revival meeting.

    Old and Blue 1 hour 57 min ago view
  • I'm kind of nostalgic for the Schwarber-for-Miller rumors.

    Brick 2 hours 8 min ago view
  • This offseason, after some ridiculous playoff run and Chapman saving every game from here until the end of the postseason striking out 27/9innings, I welcome anyone to quote this thread and call me a dummy: I hate this trade, and my hate is 2 parts Chapman makes this team less likeable and 1 part that's a ridiculous overpay for 30 regular season innings and, at tops, 10 postseason innings. Already hoping they don't extend him.

    Charlie 2 hours 10 min ago view
  • btw...Thanks AZ Phil. I'm really enjoying your take on this trade.

    Cubster 2 hours 32 min ago view
  • I'm a bit disappointed on the Warren experience. Essentially they gave Castro away for crickets (OK, well they signed Zobrist with the Castro salary dump). Otherwise one might look at it as Chapman for Castro and our #1 minors prospect (Torres) + McKinney/Crawford. Seems pricey for a 2 month rental. We will see if this price tag is that steep in a relative way based on the remaining deadline deals for relievers.

    Cubster 2 hours 33 min ago view
  • Yep. One of the great things about this team (in addition to being really good at baseball) was the "likable" factor. Feels a bit different now. Who knows...maybe Chapman will be the king of the dance parties.

    billybucks 2 hours 42 min ago view
  • Here are some possible corresponding minor league moves we might see in the aftermath  of the Chapman trade: 

    SOUTH BEND to MYRTLE BEACH: OF Donnie Dewees and INF Bryant Flete  

    EUGENE to SOUTH BEND: OF Robert Garcia and INF Vimael Machin 

    There is really no reason to replace Billy McKinney at Tennessee because both Chris Coghlan and Jorge Soler are doing their rehab at Tennessee.  

    And there are plenty of pitchers at Iowa. No need to replace Warren at AAA. .  

    Arizona Phil 3 hours 2 min ago view
  • I am 70 years old. The Cubs last played in the World Series in 1945. I was born in 1946. I hate to lose a prospect like Torres, but when the opportunity is there to get that World Series ring, you go for it. This was the idea in stock piling all this young talent. I would like to see Reddick added now and the Cubbies should be done.

    Hagsag 3 hours 32 min ago view
  • I would expect Richard to accept an optional assignment because based on how he's played this season, there is a decent chance that he won't find work elsewhere. Rather stay and potentially get a ring. Same goes for Coghlan since he's struggled mightily this year.

    Edwards should not go down. He's pitched very well and Maddon is very impressed with him. I would expect Grimm to go down for Cahill so he can get back on track (he's pitched better in July, but he's not getting enough appearances).

    chitownmvp01 3 hours 36 min ago view
  • chitownmvp01: Indeed Clayton Richard would seem to be odd man out once Chapman reports, but Richard might accept a minor league assignment if he is promised a return to Chicago on 9/1 when MLB Active List rosters expand (Richard has minor league ioptions left).

    Arizona Phil 3 hours 39 min ago view
  • The only player in the deal that would cause me a second thought is Gleyber Torres.

    McKinney and Crawford are decent prospects but both are redundant/replaceable in the system and Warren was really only a middle-reliever or #6 starter, so to me it's really just Torres for Chapman.

    Arizona Phil 3 hours 59 min ago view
  • There is no Comp pick for players traded mid-season. 2+ months of Chapman is it.

    mbauer 4 hours 2 min ago view
  • to get one of the best you have to give up one/some of your best...but it's a bit painful to watch the system's best prospect walk for any 2-3 month rental, especially one that's not an everyday player.

    crunch 4 hours 4 min ago view