Now that you’ve read, dissected and analyzed the Bleacher Nation Top 40 Prospects and are aware of where each of them is heading as the Minor League seasons kick off today, the next logical step is to see how the Cubs organization ranks among the rest of the MLB systems, as a whole.
Fortunately, the team at Baseball Prospectus has compiled a set of 2016 Organizational Prospect rankings, with each team listed 1-30 and separated into tiers of good-ness.
There are a total of ten individual tiers – not equally spaced – and they are used to show the relative interchangeability of the teams within them, as well as the marginal differences between teams with larger drop offs. The Chicago Cubs come in at 12th overall, among the fourth best tier. But before we get to their ranking and BP’s thoughts, let’s check in on the overall rankings.
You might be fairly surprised to see the Cardinal’s ranked so low (worst in the NL Central, bottom half of the league), but even the the BP crew admits that they tend to develop a useful Major League piece out of nowhere using “devil magic.”(Excuse me, but I believe it’s voodoo).
Moving back to the Cubs, who, despite graduating several uber prospects over the past year and a half, still manage to only just miss the top ten of organizational rankings. Here’s what the writers at BP had to say:
The Cubs took a tumble after graduating Kris Bryant, Addison Russell, Jorge Soler, and Kyle Schwarber. All they got out of it was four key cogs on a 97-win playoff team. Ho-hum. Losing that class would cause most systems to fall far further than this, but the Cubs reloaded in the draft (Ian Happ), internationally (Eddy Julio Martinez), and got high-upside arm Dylan Cease back on the mound. Add in a breakout season from catching convert Willson Contreras, and things are still looking rosy on the farm.
The Cubs may not be the juggernaut of a farm system they used to be, but they are still a strong system – one that’s better than average to at least one major publication (and far higher to Keith Law (and far lower to BA)). There is still far more to take in from the BP article, so I encourage you to give it a look. Each individual organization has it’s own mini-write up, so there’s plenty in there to uncover. Check it out!