Another couple midseason rankings updates are out today, courtesy of ESPN’s Keith Law and Minor League Ball’s John Sickels. Once again, the Chicago Cubs are well-represented.
In Law’s list, newly-signed draft pick Kris Bryant claims the top spot for the Cubs, coming in at number 15 overall. The previous Big Three now all show up in the top 30, and all are up from where they were ranked by Law before the season: Jorge Soler is at 20 (up from 42), Albert Almora is at 25 (up from 33), and Javier Baez is at 27 (up from 31).
There are also eight honorable mentions at the end of Law’s list of the top 50, and Arismendy Alcantara is included. Does that mean we can say five Cubs prospects are in the top 58? I’m not sure, but I’m going to say it anyway.*
As for Sickels, who ranked 75 players (but no 2013 draft picks), he’s got Baez at 14 (up from 18), Almora at 18 (up from 44), Jorge Soler at 23 (up from 25), and Alcantara at 57 (previously unranked). I think it’s fair to assume that, if Bryant were eligible for Sickels’ list, he would have been right up there, too. Once again, it’s a group of climbers, and the order is totally different from Law’s. It’s an underscore that everyone seems to acknowledge that these are the top prospects in the Cubs’ system, and they’re all very good … but the order is anyone’s guess.
That’s a very, very good thing.
The lists are also useful to peruse for potential trade targets, and how their stock may have improved or fallen so far this year. By way of example only, Mike Olt does not appear on either list.
*In fact, Alcantara is seventh among the eight honorable mentions, so, if they are in order, that would make him 57th to Law – identical to his Sickels ranking. Then again, Sickels didn’t include 2013 draftees, so Law may be a bit higher on Alcantara, comparatively speaking. And, technically, if Bryant and other draftees were in Sickels’ list, Alcantara would be bumped down from 57. So there’s some necessary fudging here.