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2013 mlb draftWe expected the Cubs to shift to senior signability picks late today, and they did (kind of). And we expected them to break their string of college players soon, and they did. On consecutive picks.

Round 9 – Charcer Burks, OF

We do not know much about Burks yet. He is a Texas high school shortstop who will be moving to center fielder as a professional, and he enjoyed some success playing high school football. He is a faster guy who is said to have good bat speed and fluid, natural athleticism.

And that’s about it. I do not expect that the Cubs will have any trouble signing Burks, and I strongly suspect they think he will sign somewhat under slot. To me this looks like a combination of a slot-saving signability pick and a high upside high school athlete lottery ticket. I suspect he’ll spend the summer in the Arizona Rookie League.

Round Ten – Zach Godley, RHP

A college senior who will almost certainly sign for somewhat under slot, Godley was a very reliable starter for the University of Tennessee. He does not have greatest stuff, but he makes the most of it by consistently attacking hitters and throwing strikes. For now I think we can list him alongside the Cubs army of interesting back of the rotation pitching prospects.

As with all college pitchers, I suspect the Cubs will limit his work for the remainder of this year. Look for him to spend some time in Arizona and then to ship out anywhere from Boise to Tennessee, depending on where innings are available. Next season I think he’ll open in Kane County and will advance as fast as his arm will let him.

Other Thoughts

The Cubs now have a nice stable of mid-rotation starter candidates that could arrive in a year or three. Some of the high school arms they took last year have a higher upside, but they also have more risk. The draft this year has featured few pitchers with No 2 starter upside, but more starters with a higher floor. In doing so the Cubs have likely injected some pitching prospects into the mid and upper ranks of the system where they are badly needed.

I am happy with the draft so far. The Cubs have done an excellent job finding quality talent in the middle rounds of the draft, and that is not easy to do. When other teams were taking cheap college seniors, the Cubs were still grabbing solid prospects who had fallen down the board. As a result, I think this may already be one of the deepest drafts out there.

Day Three is crucial, though. Players who sign for over $100,000 have the amount in excess of $100,000 count against the pool, but only the amount in excess of $100,000. And the failure to sign a player does not cost a team anything. That means we will see some high ceiling, tough to sign types come off the board in the first few rounds tomorrow.

After that the Cubs will start to flesh out some rosters. They need to field a team both in Boise and Arizona this summer, and many of the players who will appear on those rosters will be drafted late tomorrow. Some of them even may break out and become prospects worth noting.

Tomorrow’s draft coverage will probably be lighter on analysis. There is no time between picks on Saturday, so an entire round could go by in 10 to 15 minutes. We will continue to cover all the picks here on Bleacher Nation as well as on Twitter.

  • Timothy Scarbrough

    Who do you think some of the guys the Cubs could take tomorrow who would sign for over 100,000 are?

  • http://Bleachernation Lou Brock

    There are also draft eligible red shirt sophomores out there who have some appeal , but also have the leverage of going back to school. I would imagine phone lines are being burned tonight with possible deals being cut.
    I like Dan Savas RHP from Illinois St. & Ervin Soto C from Pitt.

  • Steve124

    After a solid draft and the fact that we will be sellers at this year’s deadline, we should definitely have a top 5 farm system. We should even pass up the cardinals due to their graduations and selling a farmhand or two for their relief help. Moving in the right direction!

  • Coach K

    Luke, what’s your thoughts on A.J. Puk for the 11th round? Seems like he could be a decent option with some upside.

    • Cedlandrum

      He is a kid that is second round talent, so I am guessing there may be some signability issues there.

  • Kyle

    I’m just gonna throw this out there:

    In the 10 years Theo was in Boston, he drafted 4 or 5 useful players total in the 3rd through 10th rounds. Like one every two years or less, and that’s using a pretty generous definition of “useful.”

    • DocPeterWimsey

      I’ll bet that actually is not a bad track record, either. Baseball drafts (particularly after the first couple of rounds) are almost like seeds dropping from trees: most of them never even germinate, and the few that do rarely do much more than that.

      • Kyle

        Yeah. That’s probably a pretty good record, all told.

        90% of the draft exists to give us enough players to fill out a team to give Bryant and the other first-round picks somewhere to play.

        • nkniacc13

          would that be counting traded players

          • Kyle

            Traded players who went on to be useful in the big leagues, yes. Rizzo was one of them.

        • Timothy Scarbrough

          I’d say most of the draft is for lottery tickets that will fill out the minors. Making the majors in itself is a pretty big accomplishment.

      • Oswego Chris

        Actually…you guys are correct on that, when I was researching the Cubs’ drafts, and specifically the chapter when I compared them to the old NL East…most teams are lucky tp “hit” on one or two guys, every couple of years…the problem with many of the Cubs teams I grew up watching was they would miss for like 5 to 7 years straight…

    • JayPaul

      This info kinda has my interest enough to do a check on Hoyer and McLeod track records as well….wouldn’t McLeod input start to take on a larger role ( not that it’s small to begin with) around the 5th or so round. It seems that was the case with Wilkins from the beginning of each draft, minus budget constraints.

  • Serious Cubs Fan

    Anyone think Rob Zastryzny could crack the cubs 10 top or 15 prospect? I don’t think top 10 and iffy on the top 15. I’d say Maples, Underwood, and maybe blackburn are still ahead him. I think Zastryzny is more advanced then all of them but on pure upside and ceiling I think Maples/underwood over take him in that category. I think he’s definitely in the top 20 but maybe he could squeeze in the top 15

    • Kyle

      I’d put him anywhere from 9th to 20th. It’s all a big pile of C prospects in that range, doesn’t really matter how you order them.

      • nkniacc13

        I doubt he would be in my top 15 and if he was hopefully he wouldn’t be after the trade deadline. Not because I don’t like the pick I do but with the Cubs increase depth and with the way the cubs are likely to go after arms in the trade deadline I just think they pick up a couple players that I may rank higher

  • The Future

    Doing a great job fellas!

  • Serious Cubs Fan

    Anyone know Rob Zastryzny ceiling and floor. Is he best case a #3? I’ve read varying opinions

    • Timothy Scarbrough

      I think Brett wrote this morning that it was 3/4 as the ceiling and a Setup man like James Russel as the floor.

  • BRANT BROWN

    The draft has gone well for the cubbies. I wouldve liked to see Appel but its kinda hard when hes off the board. I cant help to think if we didnt come in second on three international players where the cubs would be right now. Darvish, Cespedes and Puig. Yes international players come at a risk no doubt. We liked them enough to place second in the biding for all three. All young and fit the mold of players Theo and company covet via free agency. Wish we wouldve opened up the purse strings a little on those guys. Brett thanks for the hardwork on the draft thus far. We appreciate getting to know these prospects more by your research and hardwork.

  • jt

    Theo has always had trouble stitching together a bullpen.
    Had they believed Papelbon could have stayed healthy he’d have been a starter.
    Seems to me this draft has had some solid but still moist cow flap to flip against the barn. From the little I’ve read, Zastryzny seems to have a chance to stick as a good LH setup guy.
    Masek also has the FB, change combo that could help him find work as at setup…. if he can stay healthy.
    The other guys are gunna be middle relievers. But that is not a bad thing. If some turn out to be a lot better than Bowden that would be extremely useful.

  • X the Cubs Fan

    Does anyone think we can catch the Marlins after the firesale? I want Rondon or Beede

    • Kyle

      Very little chance.

      • Kyle

        Not to mention, who knows who we’ll actually want this time next year. Bryant and Gray weren’t really on the radar when we were rooting for draft position last year.

        • http://www.bleachernation.com Luke

          Exactly. At the end of last season most people were convinced the Cubs would take Appel or Meadows. I was probably asked four or five times a week which I thought the Cubs should take.

          • nkniacc13

            Nola looked good tonight vs Oklahoma not to mention 11-0 vs SEC this year

            • nkniacc13

              Gatewood is another name to consider in 2014 according to SI

        • SenorGato

          Bryant had more competition in Wilson, but he opened draft season as the top college position player and top power hitter.

    • jt

      Does anyone know who The Cubs may get from the “firesale”?
      It could look a lot different in 5 or 6 weeks.

      • nkniacc13

        no because no one knows who will actually get moved

        • jt

          Clevenger and Lake are now taking AB’s at Iowa. Vitters will be coming back at some time and they are going to want to get him into games. Szczur has almost 400 AA PA’s now. They may want to move him to Iowa when he gets around 500. Is Ha coming back soon? Does he stay in Tenn when he does?
          How long do Soler and Andreoli stay in Daytona?
          They are going to have to make some room for these guys.

          • nkniacc13

            I agree that they will move some I also wouldn’t be shocked if they move a couple of prospect trades or include a prospect in a deal.

            • jt

              They now seem to have some prospects of interest as bait.
              Seems they have real talent at most all levels but its distribution is really unbalanced. Mostly a need for pitching at the lower levels and a need for hitting at Wrigley.

  • http://Bleachernation Lou Brock

    Bryant was , look at his numbers from the last two years.

  • nkniacc13

    I also think Whiston from Fla will be a top interest next year if healthy

  • zHolliday-

    Hey I’ve been on this site reading everything everyday for awhile now. Great site! So I decided to sign up! I wanted to ask where Duane Underwood is? I can’t seem to find anything showing news on him this year. Thanks!

    • nkniacc13

      Arizona may head to Boise when season starrts

  • BleedCubbieBlue

    Someone is starting to sound like they work for the Cubs versus a fan.

  • Jono

    I thought that there would be more 2015 fantasy lineups being written about, especially if the NL gets the DH. There is a strong possibility some of their hitting prospects are traded for pitching (almost a certainty?), but its just too fun to dream about Almora, Baez, Rizzo, Bryant, Soler, Vogelbach and maybe Castro all being in the same lineup. I know, I know, there might be a defensive position problem there, but its my day dream and I can do what I want with it

    • Kyle

      Be thankful that they aren’t. Fantasy lineups are silly. You’re going to be lucky half of those top prospects become big leaguers.

      • Hansman1982

        Wait so the outfield of Jackson, Szczur and Ha isn’t going to be the offensive force we thought?

        • http://www.bleachernation.com Luke

          Offensive, no.

          Defensive? That would be something.

      • Jono

        Hey, im a cubs fan. Silly day dreams come with the job ;)

  • Die hard

    Cubs SS of future? Gatewood

  • ssckelley

    I still cannot believe the Cubs have not taken a catcher, a glaring need in the minors.

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Luke

      The Cubs took a couple catchers last year and some of them are performing fairly well right now. Catcher may not be as big of a void as is generally thought.

      • ssckelley

        Luke, you consider any of the minor league catchers prospects at this point?

        • http://www.bleachernation.com Luke

          Chadd Krist is moving up my rankings. I think he’d crack the Top 40 at this point.

          Hearing some good things on Carlos Escobar as well.

          • nkniacc13

            I hope Escobar plays tonight Im kinda interested in seeing him

  • nkniacc13

    be interesting to see who is the 11th rd pick and see if they go with a tough signing I wonder if they do they could get a deal done with one and may stay away from them until really late

  • ssckelley

    Chris Okey has dropped considerably and is one of the best available.

    • nkniacc13

      true but signable is an issue

      • ssckelley

        That is why he has dropped, but in these rounds you take these kinds of chances.

        • nkniacc13

          true I expect either rd 11 or 12 for them to take a hard sign

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