Keep taking that victory lap, Chicago Cubs Farm System.*
Having already been named the top pool of prospects in all of baseball by Keith Law, by the Sporting News/Perfect Game, and by Baseball America, the Chicago Cubs are closer to a clean sweep after Baseball Prospectus today unveiled its farm system rankings with the Cubs firmly on top.
In the rankings, the Cubs’ system is lauded for not only its impact talent at the top – with which you’re already intimately familiar – but also for its serious depth. Among the lower-level, high-potential-impact depth mentioned specifically by name: shortstop Gleyber Torres, outfielder Eloy Jimenez, lefty Carson Sands, and catcher/outfielder Mark Zagunis. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg.
It’s pretty incredible when you start thinking about the sheer volume of prospects the Cubs have who are not in the top 100, but could easily become that caliber of prospect by midseason with a very plausible breakout this year. Yes, the elite guys get the bulk of attention for good reason, and they are the primary reason that following the Cubs’ minor leaguers has become an obsession akin to following trade rumors in recent years. But that lower-level depth – the build up of a brilliant rebuild, huge IFA spending, and great drafts – could make the 2015 season as exciting at the minor league level as we’ve seen in a very long time. I get giddy thinking about all of the guys I want to see this year.
And, speaking of being able to see them, Cubs fans are particularly lucky, because their top four levels – the Iowa Cubs, the Tennessee Smokies, the Myrtle Beach Pelicans, and the South Bend Cubs – will all be featured on MiLB.tv this year. It’s just going to be an incredible volume of video on guys you wouldn’t otherwise get to see for years (or unless you travelled). Obligatory, but appropriate pimp: MiLB.tv is just $25 for the whole year right now if you buy it together with MLB.tv. And if you use that link to do it, you support BN in the process.
As for the rest of the farm rankings, BP has the Twins, Dodgers, Rangers, and Mets rounding out the top five behind the Cubs, with the Pirates down at number eight. The Cardinals are 13th, the Reds are starting to climb at 15th, and the Brewers are 26th.
*(And, yes, we have to acknowledge that having the top farm system does not directly mean the Cubs will win anything at the big league level, but we do know that being tabbed as the top farm system definitely suggests a whole lot of future value.)