Minor league team success isn’t always indicative of future success for the big league club. Some of the best prospects – who will go on to help the big team – are pushed for development purposes to levels where they might not necessarily assist in winning games as much as a minor league veteran. For that reason, many of the “best” minor league teams aren’t particularly interesting when it comes to the prospecting game.
That wasn’t the case in Daytona for the Chicago Cubs this year. Their High-A affiliate not only won the Florida State League, but they did it on the backs of a huge number of top prospects. It should be no surprise, then, that Baseball America just named the Daytona Cubs its Minor League Team of the Year. Indeed, Baseball America, itself, calls the award no surprise. That’s high praise on top of high praise.
Over the course of the season, Daytona was home to top prospects Javier Baez, Jorge Soler, Kris Bryant, Dan Vogelbach, C.J. Edwards, and Pierce Johnson. It was also home to guys like Dustin Geiger, John Andreoli, Zeke DeVoss, Ivan Pineyro, Corey Black, Ben Wells, Zach Cates, Matt Loosen, and a number of other intriguing players. The team was stacked throughout the year, and performed like a team loaded with top prospects. That won’t retroactively win the Cubs any games this year – or maybe even in 2014 – but, as we keep saying, the future really does look bright. And having the organization’s High-A team named the best minor league team in baseball? That’s a pretty fantastic indicator of what’s to come.
Read BA’s piece for more on the 2013 Daytona Cubs and all of the love they’re deservedly receiving.