Cubs Prospect List-Mania 2012

Here we go again, a full rundown of all the Cubs' prospect lists fit to print. Click on the "Prospect Listmania" tag at the bottom of the post for previous years or you can always visit Wiklifield.

    5-Star Prospects

  1. Brett Jackson
  2. 4-Star Prospects

  3. Javier Baez
  4. 3-Star Prospects

  5. Welington Castillo
  6. Dillon Maples
  7. Matt Szczur
  8. Josh Vitters
  9. Jeimer Candelario
  10. Trey McNutt
  11. Marco Hernandez
  12. 2-Star Prospects

  13. Junior Lake
  14. Rafael Dolis

Nine More: Dan Vogelbach, Jae-Hoon Ha, Chris Carpenter, Tony Zych, Ryan Flaherty, D.J. LeMahieu, Zeke DeVoss, Reggie Golden, Marwin Gonzalez

What They Say: While there are plenty of future big-leaguers in the organization, most of the players who are going to turn things around are not here yet. 

In a tweet, Goldstein suggested that LHP Gerardo Concepcion would place 6th on the list.

Major League Rankings:  B. Jackson (44), Javier Baez (66), Anthony Rizzo (75)

  1. Brett Jackson, OF
  2. Javier Baez, SS
  3. Matt Szczur, OF
  4. Trey McNutt, RHP
  5. Dillon Maples, RHP
  6. Welington Castillo, C
  7. Rafael Dolis, RHP
  8. Junior Lake, SS
  9. Josh Vitters, 3B/1B
  10. Dan Vogelbach, 1B

What They Say: Epstein and Co. have their work cut out for them. The big league club has more bad contracts than young cornerstones and will need at least a year to rebuild, even with the Cubs' vast resources. Outfielder Brett Jackson is ready to play in the majors, but the system's other blue-chip prospects, Baez and outfielder Matt Szczur, are at least a couple of years away.

Major League Rankings: B. Jackson (32), A. Rizzo (47), J. Baez (61), M. Szczur (64)

Rankings are preliminary and could have changed in the book that Sickels publishes.

  1. Brett Jackson (B+)
  2. Anthony Rizzo (B+)
  3. Javier Baez (B)
  4. Matt Szczur (B-)
  5. Trey McNutt (B-)
  6. Dillon Maples (B-)
  7. Dan Vogelbach (B-)
  8. Junior Lake (C+)
  9. Welington Castillo (C+)
  10. Dae-Eun Rhee (C+)
  11. Josh Vitters (C+)
  12. Jeimer Candelerio (C+)
  13. Marco Hernandez (C+)
  14. Chris Carpenter (C+)
  15. Rafael Dolis (C+)
  16. Zach Cates (C+)
  17. Ben Wells (C+)
  18. Dave Sappelt (C+)
  19. Ronald Torreyes (C+)
  20. Reggie Golden (C+)
  21. Gioskar Amaya (C+)
  22. Tony Zych (C+)
  23. Shawon Dunston Jr. (C+)
  24. Aaron Kurcz (C+)

OTHERS: Jeffry Antigua, LHP; Dallas Beeler, RHP; Jeff Beliveau, LHP; Jeff Bianchi, INF; Lendy Castillo, RHP; Pin-Chieh Chen, OF; Zeke DeVoss, 2B; Jae-Hoon Ha, OF (a lot of people really like him but he looks like a tweener to me); Jay Jackson, RHP; Eric Jokisch, LHP; Austin Kirk, LHP (season collapsed after he threw the no-hitter);; Luis Liria, RHP; Kevin Rhoderick, RHP; Jose Rosario, RHP; Neftali Rosario, C; Hayden Simpson, RHP; Nick Struck, RHP; Yao-Ling Wang, RHP; Logan Watkins, 2B; Robert Whitenack, RHP.

What They Say: The weakness heading into the off-season was obvious: lack of impact talent close to the majors beyond Brett Jackson. Acquiring Rizzo helps with that. But there are very intriguing players at the lower levels who have the potential to develop considerably, particularly products of the solid Latin American and Asian programs. In this respect the Cubs remind me of the Indians system: there is a LOT of depth in C+ and "Grade C with upside" type prospects. Some of those guys will develop.

The biggest problem I see currently is lack of high-powered pitching. There is nobody here who looks like they can anchor a major league rotation with any certainty. That's not to say that there aren't live arms; there are quite a few, although most of them project better as relievers or back-end starters. There are a few candidates who can get beyond that, although they all have significant questions attached. McNutt had a bad year but could rebound, it is too soon to tell about Maples, and both Rhee and Cates could take big steps forward.

 Major League Rankings: Jackson (27), A. Rizzo (37), J. Baez (109)

Keith Law Top 10

  1. Anthony Rizzo, 1B
  2. Brett Jackson, OF
  3. Javier Baez, SS
  4. Trey McNutt, RHP
  5. Zach Cates, RHP
  6. Welington Castillo, C
  7. Dillon Maples, RHP
  8. Josh Vitters, 3B
  9. Reggie Golden, OF
  10. Matt Szczur, CF

Major League Rankings: A. Rizzo (39), B. Jackson (89), J. Baez (95)

Jonathan Mayo Top 20


  1. Anthony Rizzo, 1B
    MLB logo
  2. Brett Jackson, OF
  3. Javier Baez, SS
  4. Matt Szczur, CF
  5. Dillon Maples, RHP
  6. Trey McNutt, RHP
  7. Rafael Dolis, RHP
  8. Robert Whitenack, RHP
  9. Reggie Golden, OF
  10. Junior Lake, SS
  11. Josh Vitters, 3B
  12. Ronald Torreyes, 2B
  13. Ben Wells, RHP
  14. Dan Vogelbach, 1B
  15. Jeimer Candelario, 3B
  16. Gioskar Amaya, SS/2B
  17. Marco Hernandez, SS/2B
  18. Dave Sappelt, OF
  19. Pin-Chieh Chen, OF
  20. Zach Cates, RHP

What They Say: (On Brett Jackson): It's hard to imagine a 20-20 player being undervalued, but because none of Jackson's individual tools grade out as plus, he might. He hit better after he was promoted to Triple-A in 2011, always a good sign. His strikeout rate concerns some, but he also draws walks and his power-speed combination should play just fine at the highest level. He can play all three outfield spots, something that should allow him to reach Chicago at some point in 2012.

Major League Rankings: B. Jackson (33), A. Rizzo (37), J. Baez (62)

  1. Anthony Rizzo
  2. Javier Baez
  3. Brett Jackson
  4. Matt Szczur
  5. Dillon Maples
  6. Jeimer Candelario
  7. Josh Vitters
  8. Dan Vogelbach
  9. Pin-Chieh Chen
  10. Tony Zych
  11. Ben Wells
  12. Trey McNutt
  13. Ronald Torreyes
  14. Marco Hernandez
  15. Chris Carpenter

Unfortunately Arizona Phil didn't publish his top 15 list this year, at least not in a post that I can find. I thought I saw something in a comment earlier in the offseason but can't seem to locate it. So my always comical top 16 will have to stand for the official 2012 TCR prospect list this year (tilts head back and laughs maniacally). Obviously my list is based off what the experts call "performance scouting", mostly a look at the numbers, but I very much do take into account what I read from those "experts" (Arizona Phil included).  This following is for entertainment purposes only. If you're looking for some guidelines on the stats, you'd prefer a walk rate in the 9-10% range (with below 5% being in the "You're probably a waste of roster space" territory), your strikeouts in the 15-20% range (with over 25% being "Danger, Will Robinson territory"). As for BABIP, your results may vary, but know that very, very few major leaguers have maintained a .360 BABIP and most settle in the .300-.320 range.

1. Anthony Rizzo (age 22) - Jackson or Rizzo, Rizzo or Jackson? How to decide such importance as the top spot of a trivial prospect list? For me, Rizzo is a year younger and doesn't strike out an rate that scares the beejeesus out of me, so I give him the top spot. Plus I get to make Muppets jokes. Ultimately I trust McLeod and Hoyer over Wilken at this point and those guys passed over Jackson in the draft a few years back citing too much swing and miss in Jackson's game. Not that Rizzo doesn't have some warning signs, mainly that his best season came in the bandbox that is Tuscon and there's some worries his swing is a bit long that'll suppress some of those numbers in the majors.

Stat Line: .880 Career OPS, 9.7 BB%, 20.7K %, .342 BABIP

2. Brett Jackson (age 23) - Position scarcity would generally lead me to give Jackson the nod, but a K rate north of 27% last year between two stops and close to 30% in AAA makes me fear that all the walks in the world won't make up for .230 BA. It's just too tough to maintain a solid BABIP with that much swing and miss in his game and that means a suppressed BA possibly in the .220 to .240 range, which means a suppressed OBP and suppressed SLG. There's also a lot of the scouting folks that aren't particularly enamored with any of his tools, Mr. Solid I believe was the nickname thrown around. Hit tool is good, but a lot of strikeouts; speed is good, but in the 20-30 range at best; power is good, but talking 20 HR power; defense is okay, but might have to move to left, the arm just good enough for center but certainly not for right field. So that's the bad...we'll call it Drew Stubbs or Rob Deer. The good, maybe he maxes out on all his tools and can be more like Jim Edmonds or Grady Sizemore pre-knee injuries. Regardless, should be a good chance we'll see him and Rizzo up sometime this year.

Stat Line: .884 Career OPS, 13.2 BB% 23.9 K%, .373 BABIP

3. Javier Baez (age 19) - This is more about new prospect smell than anything, but right now his ceiling is a guy with wrists as fast as Gary Sheffield that can play shortstop. That's certainly exciting, but it'll be a lot less exciting when he moves to third or second base as just about everyone thinks he'll end up doing.

4. Dan Vogelbach (age 19) - Riddle me this? If Vogelbach is the son of a major leaguer known for hitting home runs, does he go higher in the draft? Certainly not many were scared off by Fielder's weight when he got picked in 2002, 7th overall, but that seemed to be the only fear about Vogelbach as no one seems to question his bat. Yeah, he has to get into shape and he has to improve his defense, but if he's mashing home runs with a good approach at the plate, folks will be quite forgiving quickly.

5. Dillon Maples (age 20) - Seems a little old for a high school prospect, but also seems like the only guy in the system currently that could be a top of the rotation starter. He'll have to work on that third pitch to get there.

6. Trey McNutt (age 22) - I'd love to just explain 2011 away because of injuries, but staying healthy is pretty much the 6th tool for me and McNutt certainly couldn't do it last year. And when he did pitch (possibly while hurt), all his numbers trended the wrong way including a K rate that went down from 10.2 to 6.2 and a WHIP that went from 1.117 to 1.614. 2011 may have been the fluke or was it 2010? I suppose we'll find out soon enough. I'd put him lower, but he still has the ceiling of a top of a rotation starter if everything breaks correctly and I'm not particularly enamored by the system past the top 3-4 spots.

7. Josh Vitters (age 22) - I'm giving up hope that Vitters will be a huge impact at the major league level, but not that he'll be in the majors and contrbute something. He's still been very young at the levels he's played and still has one of the nicest swings in the minors. He seems to have no problems hitting in the AFL against even better competition. Yes, he needs to learn to not swing at everything he can make contact with along with improving his defense (of which reports from last year are that he is indeed doing so), but I'm still holding on that he can be an average everyday player in the majors.

Stat Line: .758 Career OPS, 4.26 BB%, 14.77 K%, .301 BABIP

8. Matt Szczur (age 22) - With Szczur it comes down to what you believe he can do now that he's concentrating on baseball full-time. My fortune tellers license hasn't arrived yet, so I'm a bit skeptical, albeit hopeful as I am with most Cubs prospects. The guy obviously has some speed, although he's not really considered a burner. But that should translate into a solid defensive center fielder at least.  The good news with the bat is he puts the ball in play - A LOT - and coupled with his speed should help to keep the batting average up. The bad? Well he didn't really show the patience you want from a leadoff hitter, especially after his promotion to Daytona. And while Baseball America seems high on him (#64 overall prospect in baseball), the other prognosticators are way down on him and actually marvel at the hype he's being afforded. Keith Law specifically pointing out how much of he doesn't care for his slap hitting swing. He still has the ceiling of an average regular center fielder in my opinion, so I put him ahead of the 4th outfielder/bench types for now.

Stat Line: .781 Career OPS, 6.04 BB%, 10.7 K%, .326 BABIP

9. Welington Castillo (age 25) - Castillo's pretty much at the make or break point of his career considering his age and already two partial seasons in AAA. Whether he'll get that chance in Chicago will be the question. At his best, he'll be a regular catcher with some power and good defense. Defensive tools that he hasn't really manifested itself in his brief major league call-ups that seemed to be littered with passed balls and other mistakes. 

Stat Line: .781 Career OPS, 6.04 BB%, 10.7 K%, .326 BABIP

10. Jae-Hoon Ha (age 21): We're pretty much into second division starters at this point of my list with the bench being a real possibility for the rest of this crew. Ha, much like Szczur, puts the ball in play a lot, but walks even less. I don't think his speed is up to Szczur, which likely means he doesn't have the range of Szczur either. I know his AA manager said great things about his centerfield defense, but AA managers speaking on their own players are probably not the most objective of analysts. On the good side, if he doesn't stick in center field, it seems like he's more than suited for right field with a very good arm. He's also been very young for his leagues, so he has that going for him. Not enough walks, power or speed for me to get too excited at this point.

Stat Line: .716 Career OPS, 3.47 BB%, 12.7 K%, .305 BABIP

11. Ronald Torreyes (age 19): I want to be more excited about Torreyes, for he has put up big OPS numbers in 2 seasons, but those are rookie leagues and a half season and about a half season of A ball. It doesn't look like he walks much, but he certainly doesn't strike out much either. Not only is he a small guy, but he doesn't appear to have the frame that scouts think he'll grow much more into...I believe "wirey" is the term I read. His defense is considered excellent and the new crew must obviously see something interesting here, even if he's years away.

Stat Line: .935 Career OPS, 5.39 BB%, 5.39 K%, .375 BABIP

12. Junior Lake (age 22): Here are Junior Lake's BA/OPS numbers in chronological order at each stop in the minors since joining the Cubs in 2007. 274/745, 286/752, 248/642, 264/731, 315/815, 248/680. One of these is not like the others. He showed some increased speed on the bases with 38 SB's against just 6 CS's, although some of that is apparently credited to his mastery of the delayed steal. Maybe that will translate to the majors, but advanced scouting will probably put a damper on it.  On top of questionable strikezone judgement, terms such as clueless, no instinct and various other disparaging comments about his defense have been bandied about. There's almost no chance he'll stick at shortstop, very little that he can even handle third base which then moves him to the outfield, and well he doesn't hit like an outfielder even with an 80 rated arm. If there's encouraging news, he allegedly grew two more inches this offseason and will be just 22 this year in AA. To say the least, I'm skeptical he'll even make it as a utility player.

Stat Line: .716 Career OPS, 5.45 BB%, 23.8 K%, .341 BABIP

13. Rafael Dolis: (age 24) How bad are the Cubs pitching prospects? I'm down to sketchy set-up men on the prospect list. In this case, we have Dolis, possessor of a nasty mid 90's power sinker. A pitch some of you may remember was the claim to fame of Justin Berg, who had similar albeit slightly inferior minor league peripherals: (Berg's)1.495 WHIP, 9.1 H/9, 0.5 HR/9, 4.3 BB/9, 5.6 SO/9. Regardless, a plus pitch is better than a lot of players can offer, so Dolis reluctantly makes my list.

Stat Line: 3.69 ERA, 1.405 WHIP, 8.1 H/9, 0.4 HR/9, 4.5 BB/9, 6.9 SO/9

14. Reggie Golden (age 20): After coming into camp out of shape last seasn, he didn't do much in Boise to improve his stock with a 242/332/420 slash line. Nonetheless, he's on the fringe of still being a starter in the majors and at least takes a walk, while also striking out a ton. Hardly a guy I'm high on, but he still has a lot of time to improve.

Stat Line: .756 Career OPS, 10.28 BB%, 26 K%, .325 BABIP

15. Matt Cerda (age 22): And we're down to guys whose ceiling is utility player in the majors. For Cerda, he puts the ball in play and obviously is willing to take a walk. So far he's played 3B, SS, 2B in the minors and I imagine a few more will be notched on his locker before his minor league career is done.

Stat Line: .729 Career OPS, 13.55 BB%, 13.88 K%, .312 BABIP

16. Jeff Beliveau (age 25): I needed a replacement for Austin Kirk, whom I had at #14 before the trade to the Boston Red Sox. Out of the bullpen arms and bottom of the rotation starters left in the system, he seems the most likely to have a semblance of a major league career. Feel the excitement.

Honorable Mention/Just Don't Have Enough Info on Them: Gerardo Concepcion, Ben Wells, Brooks Raley, Pin-Chieh Chen, Chris Rusin, Jeff Beliveau, Austin Kirk, Robert Whitenack, Tony ZychZach Cates, Nick Struck, Marco Hernandez, Gioskar Amalaya, Jeimar Candelario, Zeke DeVoss, Dave Sappelt.

 There are a few players that I'm sure will end up rising once we know more about them such as Gioskar Amalaya and Jeimar Candelrio, I just don't personally know enough about them. The same could be said about some of last year's draftees that I did include, but the draft is far more widely written about than international signings, so I'm a little more comfortable on their ceilings. Overall, it's a 2-deep system in terms of players I really care about: Jackson & Rizzo. If the Cubs can add Jorge Soler to the stables, the Cubs start to have the makings of a decent farm system at least on the position player side of the equation. That in and of itself would be a rare feat for this Cubs organization, homegrown position player talent. On the mound, it's a system of backend of the rotation starters and not particularly exciting bullpen arms. Figuring the Cubs really don't have the trading chips to land an ace or two, delving into next year's free agent pool that could include the likes of Matt Cain, Cole Hamels and Zack Greinke could be in the cards. And if they bypass that route, you understand the desire to shore up the pitching depth this offseason. Good news about a farm system, is your one good draft and signing class from potentially drastically improving. And the guys that just helped put San Diego on top of most organizational talent lists are now running the Cubs.


You have listed a bunch of "experts" who in most cases have never seen these kids play. I will put my faith in Az. Phil who has seen them on a play. Where is his list?

I had a Top 15 list that I compiled at the end of AFL and AZ Instructs last November, but I never got around to posting it:

1. Brett Jackson, OF
2. Javier Baez, SS
3. Jae-Hoon Ha, OF
4. Trey McNutt, RHSP
5. Welington Castillo, C
6. Josh Vitters, 3B-1B
7. Dan Vogelbach, 1B
8. D. J. LeMahieu, INF
9. Dae-Eun Rhee, RHSP
10. Matt Szczur, OF
11. Ben Wells, RHSP
12. Junior Lake, SS
13. Chris Carpenter, RHRP
14. Ryan Flaherty, INF
15. Kyler Burke, LHSP (ex-OF)

16. Jeimer Candelario, 3B
17. Rob Whitenack, RHSP (2011 TJS)
18. Reggie Golden, OF
19. Aaron Kurcz, RHRP
20. Marco Hernandez, INF

AzPhil, quick question - did Amaury Paulino get cut and I forget about it? Don't see him listed in any of your lists of late.

Actually, a couple more questions -

Christopher Pieters - Assuming back in DSL?

Also, I see you have Raley for the rotation ahead of Antigua. What's your take on Antigua? There were positive reports in the 2nd half on velo, along with a strong 2nd half performance. Granted, no real "go-to" pitch, but he seems to have a higher ceiling than Raley, and I'd much rather let Antigua work in the rotation.

Mon, 04/02/2012 - 11:13am — toonsterwu
Re: Cubs Prospect List-Mania 2012
AzPhil, quick question - did Amaury Paulino get cut and I forget about it? Don't see him listed in any of your lists of late.

Actually, a couple more questions -

Christopher Pieters - Assuming back in DSL?

Also, I see you have Raley for the rotation ahead of Antigua. What's your take on Antigua? There were positive reports in the 2nd half on velo, along with a strong 2nd half performance. Granted, no real "go-to" pitch, but he seems to have a higher ceiling than Raley, and I'd much rather let Antigua work in the rotation.


TOONSTER: Amaury Paulino and Alvido Jimenez are the two pitchers I expected to see at Minor League Camp but did not.

Could be injured, might be arriving late. Would be very surprised if either was released at this time.

Christopher Pieters could be coming up to Fitch Park with the DSL group that is supposed to arrive this weekend. Otherwise I guess he would be at DSL Cubs.

It looks like the Cubs are putting Antigua on a similar track as Jeff Beliveau... #1 lefty reliever at AA, then see what happens. He could be used as a starter again at some point, I suppose.

Raley was used as a starter at Minor League Camp in the Iowa group, and I would imagine they'll still use him that way. But there is only one lefty in the Tennessee bullpen (Antigua), so Raley could end up there.

How very myopic of you


Fwiw, I had carpenter around #9/10 and Kurtz #14/15.

The Cubs have interesting prospects who could become very good (Ben Wells is a good example, Rhee, Golden and Kirk may be others), but I agree with your analysis that there is little certain there. Even Jackson and Rizzo have potential holes such that any failure to develop into a solid MLB player is not unforeseeable. Truly I still think Vitters might have the best upside of any hitter not named Jav. Baez, though Vitters also likely has the least likelihood of reaching his upside.

One question I do have is about Zach Cates. Does Keith Law know something everyone else doesn't? Has anyone seen top projections for him?

Mon, 04/02/2012 - 9:34am — springs

One question I do have is about Zach Cates. Does Keith Law know something everyone else doesn't? Has anyone seen top projections for him?


SPRINGS: I did see Zach Cates pitch in Minor League Camp, and he looked good (not exceptional, though).

He will (apparently) be in the Daytona Cubs starting rotation, along with Gerardo Concepcion, Austin Kirk, Matt Loosen, and Eric Jokisch.

And that's actually a very nice starting rotation at Daytona.

"I want to be more excited about Torreyes, for he has put up big OPS numbers in 2 seasons, but those are rookie leagues and a half season and about a half season of A ball."

Torreyes was 18 when he put up those sizzling numbers in the Midwest League. At 18, Castro was in rookie league in AZ, where his numbers were much lower than Torreyes's numbers at that level at age 17.

It's certainly true that at 19 (Torreyes's age this year), Castro took off. He skipped Peoria and did Daytona and Tennessee in his first full year, always hitting around .300 at every level (including the majors) no matter how rapidly he was promoted. And Castro has a better body than the shorter Torreyes.

But Torreyes isn't being ranked here in comparison to Castro, he's being compared to players who don't have his numbers at any age at any level. I would put him in the top five in any ranking, and predict that he will climb the ladder quickly, though it remains to be seen whether the new group will hand out as many midseason promotions as the previous one did.

Ronald Torreyes is an outstanding hitter, The ball just jumps off his bat.

And he's an OK second-baseman, too.

I was very impressed with him.

If he pans out, it doesn't matter if Travis Wood turns out to be a stiff, the Cubs still win the Marshall trade.

I wrote somewhere how similar (and even superior) Torreyes' numbers were when compared to Castro's. However nobody expects him to leap three levels and be the Cubs second baseman next season. I don't buy into him being too small. He may not ever hit for power, but I could see him being a doubles machine. You can't teach natural hitting skills and this guy has it. Hopefully he can keep squaring up the ball

I don't understand the digs on Torreyes based on his small size. He's a middle infielder for crying out loud, you don't need to be big to play well there. Freddie Patek was what, 5 foot 3? Mike Fontenot is maybe 5 foot 6 on a good day, and he hits just fine for a utility player. Hopefully Torreyes' hitting upside is better than a Patek or Fontenot, but I think the "he's too small" thing is just plain dumb.

a lot of digs ive heard on the guy involves him swinging at everything thrown anywhere near the plate.

while he's got a nice swing, his selection is ass even though he's getting a lot of smacks off the bat through the infield.

as far as his size goes, i think it's mostly him looking like he just got over the flu at his healthiest state...he's a frail looking guy for a ballplayer. that said, who cares? he's got no where to go but up with his size. hell, juan cruz spent most of his cubs career looking like a crackhead, but could throw mid-90s.

tiny little arms on the guy...

Votto close to extension, possibly north of $200M total
Chapman to bullpen.

Fuld out for most of the season after wrist surgery.

Matt Cain just signed the largest contract for a RHP ever.

"She don't lie, she don't lie, she don't lie..."

Matt Cain.

I always thought it was "She don't like", but still....


Tampa requesting Cubs return Fernando Perez due to the Fuld injury (citing the Cafardo-Luccino precedent) but Fernando's teammate Bobby Scales wouldn't set Fernando free.

Perez signed a minor league contract with the New York Mets on July 18, 2011, and was assigned to the Triple-A Buffalo Bisons.


That signing in 2011 is the last word on Fernando Perez according to Google News. Perez hit .188 at Buffalo for the Mets.

So I suspect he is already free (to carry a lunchpail or his laptop or whatever).

don't know for sure, but i think he might be done with baseball (probably not by choice)...taking acting/improv classes, supposedly.

Matt Cain.
The five-year extension also carries a full no-trade clause.

Hendry consulting with the Giants?

given the past love of Marquez Smith on this + other blogs (and especially in offseason 2010 when 1/2 the blogosphere was convinced he was going rule-5) i'm a little shocked more people haven't chimed in on him being released.

i'm kinda wondering if he's injured or has lingering injury concerns. i didn't think as much of him as some people, but he was a hot topic for a while.

I think Yao-Lin Wang is going to have a good year and crack the top-15 lists in 2012-2013. He'll have solid K and BB rates, a decent ERA, and post a respectable number of innings and rank somewhere between 15 and 10. And he'll be very close to Zach Cates.

There. I said it.

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  • It's the law of baseball -- if you score 10+ runs in a game, you must struggle to score in the next game. Particulalry against an inferior pitcher.

    billybucks 4 min 47 sec ago view
  • Looking for Bryant to break up another no-no with a long fly ball in the sixth.

    But any hit will do.

    Eric S 7 min 49 sec ago view
  • this game is f'n flying by.

    also, "Hernandez (5-4, 3.45) versus Hendricks (9-7, 2.39), ruined by ESPN tomorrow at 7:08pmCST." gets 1000 upvotes and a gold star.

    crunch 19 min 26 sec ago view
  • His control is still off with a lot of overthrowing of his fastball. Mariners haven't been able to take advantage of it so far but it still doesn't seen like he's had a start this year where his mechanics have been great start to finish.

    johann 24 min 55 sec ago view
  • Why is that disconcerting, OB?

    Charlie 32 min 33 sec ago view
  • He was a big key to the crazy start, a big key to the end of last year, a big key in not beating the Mets (although lots of help from a tired inexperienced team there), so although the team as a whole can get through a series with a good Jake it will be tough with a bad Jake. I don't think it's realistic to have the insanely great Jake again, but maybe it is. Seeing today's box score it appears maybe it is - but I haven't been able to tune in yet.

    Old and Blue 46 min 2 sec ago view
  • IMO Jake is really the key to winning the World Series, but maybe I'm putting too much emphasis on one player.

    Rob Richardson 1 hour 17 min ago view
  • The reports that they offered EITHER Jimenez or Torres for Chapman are a little disconcerting. I hope 1) Those reports are wrong, and 2) if they are not wrong, that they will hold on to him, as the team could use the outfield depth. I have only seen him in the futures game, but he looks like a keeper.

    Old and Blue 1 hour 39 min ago view
  • Very nice. I saw him in Lansing in May. I'm still stunned that he hit a 400-foot foul ball onto Larch Street ... which is going the other way for a right-handed batter. It was perhaps the most amazing swing I've ever seen a minor league player take. I should also mention that it was about 40 degrees out at the time. Not that it's evidence of anything per se, but I feel his plate approach is way more advanced than Soler was at this stage in his development and that the comparisons aren't really fair to Jimenez. 50/50 chance I'll go to Midland tonight for the low-A debut of Oscar de la Cruz.

    John Beasley 3 hours 28 min ago view
  • Eloy Jimenez grand slam tonight. Hoping Soler power returns and gets hot but future looks bright in the outfield regardless.

    Finished the night 4-5, with two doubles - 32(!) on the season - along with the grand slam. Sick

    Eric S 4 hours 50 min ago view
  • Meanwhile, out West:

    SF is 2-11 since the break, lead over LA is down to one game, and they are running out Cain and Peavy this weekend against the Nats. Challenging times by the Bay.

    billybucks 5 hours 37 min ago view
  • Thanks for the updates Phil. Too bad about Frazier.

    Hagsag 9 hours 32 min ago view
  • The Cubs have released RHRP Scott Frazier (2013 7th round dfraft pick - Pepperdine).

    A Cubs pitching coach told me in Spring Training 2014 that he thought Frazier had the best pure stuff in the organization. Absolutely electric fastball & breaking ball combo. Other pitchers would gather behind the screen just to watch him throw "live" BP. That's how amazing he was. 

    Arizona Phil 14 hours 40 min ago view
  • Got a chance to see Diamondbacks RHSP Zack Greinke (15-day DL - strained oblique) throw a rehab start at Sloan Park Friday night. Four of the first seven AZL Cubs hitters singled and the Cubs did score an unearned run in the bottom of the 1st inning, but then Greinke got serious and struck out five in a row.

    ZACK GREINKE: 3.0 IP, 4 H, 1 R (0 ER), 0 BB, 5 K, 4/0 GO/AO, 49 pitches (34 strikes)

    Arizona Phil 14 hours 55 min ago view
  • Have fun - It may be good for Arrieta to be facing a team that doesn't know him as well as the NL teams. A nice shutout would do wonders for his confidence. He is confident in public but baseball is hard and he could use a boost, I'm sure.

    Old and Blue 19 hours 47 min ago view
  • Me too. I'll be at the game tomorrow and would love to see Good Arrieta.

    Brick 20 hours 11 min ago view