We’ve said it about a billion times around here, but it is worth repeating about a billion more: pitchers are the riskiest prospects to develop. There are so many things that can … and frequently do … go wrong, and so many minor injuries to not-the-arm that can throw off the mechanics of the delivery, and the margin for error is so vanishingly small, that banking on any pitching prospect to any significant degree is a gamble.
I would not go so far, as some do, as to posit that ‘there is no such thing as a pitching prospect’. That’s a significant overstatement. But they are risky. Very risky.
As we saw last night.
Dylan Cease, the Cubs best pitching prospect (and Number 3 on the Top 40) left his start for South Bend last night after an apparent injury, likely to his ankle. Whether or not he’ll need to miss time remains to be seen, but he did send his own take on the injury to Mark Gonzales:
Cubs fans can relax. Just got a text message from Dylan Cease saying "I'm okay!" Left with 2 out in top of 2nd with ankle injury.
— Mark Gonzales (@MDGonzales) May 19, 2017
Hopefully Cease can get back on the mound and continue his already impressive season soon, and with no ill effects.
- Seth Frankoff: 5.1 IP, 1 R, 6 H, 2 BB, 7 K
- Justin Grimm: 1 IP, 1 H, 1 BB, 2 K
- John Andreoli: 1 for 4, 2B, BB
- Mark Zagunis: 2 for 3, 2 BB
- Stephen Bruno: 1 for 3, 2B
- Jen-Ho Tseng: 6 IP, 1 R (0 ER), 4 H, 2 BB, 4 K
- Brad Markey: 2 IP, 3 H, 1 K
- Andury Acevedo: 1 IP, 1 H
- Andrew Ely: 2 for 3, 2B
- Yasiel Balaguert: 2 for 5
- Jason Vosler: 2 for 4, 2B
- Kevin Cornelius: 2 for 4, 2B
- Jeffrey Baez: 1 for 3, 2 BB, SB
- Justin Steele: 6 IP, 1 R, 6 H, 2 BB, 6 K
- Pedro Araujo: 2 IP, 2 H
- Marc Huberman: 1 IP, 2 K
- Jesse Hodges: 1 for 4, 2B
- Tyler Alamo: 2 for 4, HR
- Matt Rose: 2 for 3, HR
- Dylan Cease: 1.2 IP, 2 R, 2 H, 1 BB, 4 K
- Matt Swarmer: 5.1 IP, 1 R, 4 H, 1 BB, 5 K
- Jason Heyward: 1 for 3
- Vimael Machin: 1 for 2, 2B
- Kevin Cornelius has been with Tennessee for a few games, but so far has not gotten much of a spotlight. He is a newer member of the organization, having been claimed in the minor league Rule 5 from the Yankees. He is still just 24, so he’s not all that old for the Southern League, and last season in the Florida State League he posted an OPS of .868. For that league, that’s really not bad. The catch has been his strikeout totals; they have trended towards the high side. He offers a good OBP and a strong ISO, though, so he’s certainly worth keeping an eye on. If the Cubs can rein in the strikeouts a touch, they might have a nice right handed bat on their hands.
- Matt Swarmer is a product of the Cubs’ 2016 draft. As you can probably guess, then, he is a tall (6’5″) pitcher who was drafted out of college. While he has pitched only in relief, this year, he has thrown more than 60 pitches three times and is really being used as more of a piggyback starter with Cease than a traditional reliever. With a K/9 of 9.43 and an ERA of 2.39, he’s having a nice season.
- Jason Heyward, rehabbing in South Bend, drove in the only run for the SB Cubs.