Although the Minor League seasons have come to an end, that doesn’t mark the last you’ll see of the Cubs’ prospects until next Spring.
There are number of offseason leagues still ahead of us, of course – including the prospect-laden Arizona Fall League – but even before that we get the Cubs’ instructional league in Mesa, Arizona …
A number of familiar/notable names top the Cubs’s list of participants, including pitchers like Dylan Cease, Oscar De La Cruz, Carson Sands, Justin Steele and Jen-Ho Tseng, and position players like Donnie Dewees and Eddy Martinez. In addition, the Cubs’ top 2016 Draft Pick, right-hander Thomas Hatch (3rd round), is scheduled to participate in the workouts.
According to Carrie Muskat, the Cubs prospects will join together with the Los Angeles Angels participants (after separate, daily team drills) to face other combined teams in the area. Of course, most of these “games” follow very loose rules, so the stats are hard to derive any meaning from, but they’re great at getting in some extra work for players who may have missed some time (Dylan Cease (injury), Eddy Martinez (defection)), or started late (Thomas Hatch (drafted in June)), or who are learning a new position or pitch.
Think of it like the bookend to the regular season – you learn and prepare in Spring Training, and then do more learning and preparing in instructs.
It’s not quite the Venezuelan Winter League, but it’s baseball and some top Cubs prospects – and that’s good enough for me. I’d imagine we’ll get eyes-on reports from instructional ball periodically throughout the next month and a half.