bleacher-nation-prospect-pollAnnouncing a new feature here at Bleacher Nation: the Cublogoverse Chicago Cubs Prospect Poll. With the help of some of your favorite other Cubs blogs, we’ve put together a poll – not unlike a college football or college basketball poll – ranking the top Chicago Cubs prospects. With twelve blogs in tow for this first poll, it is likely to be a more distilled – and more accurate – ranking of the Cubs prospects than the rankings you see in the various prospect services.

And without further back-patting, here is the first installment, and preseason version, of the poll (player, position, final level last year):

  1. Josh Vitters, 3B, A (Total points: 176)
  2. Jeff Samardzija, SP, AAA/MLB (169)
  3. Andrew Cashner, SP/RP, High A (149)
  4. Welington Castillo, C, AA (133)
  5. Ryan Flaherty, SS, Low A (113)
  6. Jay Jackson, SP, High A (106)
  7. Hak Ju-Lee, SS, AZ Instructional, (86)
  8. Micah Hoffpauir, 1B, AAA/MLB (69)
  9. Tyler Colvin, OF, AA (67)
  10. Dae-Eun Rhee, SP, A (62)
  11. Mitch Atkins, SP, AAA (37)
  12. Starlin Castro, SS, AZ Instructional (36)
  13. Esmailin Caridad, SP, AA (32)
  14. Brandon Guyer, OF, A (29)
  15. Kevin Hart, SP/RP, AAA/MLB (26)

Others receiving votes: Jose Ascaino, Marcus Mateo, Jeff Stevens, Jake Fox, Steven Clevenger, Darwin Barney, Tony Thomas, Aaron Shafer, Chris Carpenter, Junior Lake, and others with a teeny tiny vote here or there.

Interesting how there was so much concensus in the top 10 prospects, but thereafter, everyone seemed to have their own thoughts on the next several guys. As always happens, some guys will separate themselves during the season and others will come completely out of nowhere. Considered that at this time last year, almost no one would have had Welington Castillo on their list. Now, he’s a concensus top five prospect in the system.

Thanks to Another Cubs Blog, waxpaperbeercup, Bleed Cubbie Blue, Chicago Cubs Online, Cubs f/x, View from the Bleachers, Hire Jim Essian, Sharapova’s Thigh, Sons of Ivy, Cubscast, and The Cub Reporter for participating. And a huge thanks to Tim Souers at Cubby-Blue for the ridiculously awesome logo for the poll.