A crew of minor leaguers are representing the United States in a Pan-Am qualifier right now, and two Chicago Cubs prospects have been playing very well – outfielder Brett Jackson and pitcher Chris Archer. The duo may be the Cubs’ top two prospects, and Archer had a hugely impressive game on Monday night.
Archer, 22, continued what has been a breakout season for him by throwing six shutout innings in a 4-1 victory that sent the unbeaten Team USA into the semifinals of the Pan Am Qualifier event. He struck out 10 and allowed only two hits, using his mid-90s fastball and a slider to dominate a team that included Yulieski Gourriel, Frederich Cepeda, Alexei Bell, Ariel Pestano and other highly experienced Cubans, along with rising star Michel Enriquez, a 21-year-old third baseman.
“Definitely, without a doubt, that was an unbelievable rush,” Archer said by phone. “Going into it I knew it was probably the biggest game I’d played in my life.” Chicago Breaking Sports.
Archer was recently named the Cubs’ minor league pitcher of the year after finishing the year with a 15-3 record and a 2.34 ERA combined between stops at High A Daytona and AA Tennessee. He’ll get a shot to make the Cubs out of Spring Training next year, and, because he’s been such a dominant starter, the Cubs will almost certainly rush to convert him into a reliever.