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CUB FARM SYSTEM IS NEARING TIPPING POINT


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9 replies to this topic

#1 Oswego Chris

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Posted 24 June 2012 - 07:59 AM

Take this for what it's worth, which is the opinion of a 43 year old Cub fan who has seen many a team and many a prospect.(which really isn't worth much) But I have a very strong hunch that the Cubs Farm system is about to become one of the tops in all of baseball. I know this sounds a bit goofy, but it's like a big wave, or explosion waiting to happen. Enough with the lame analogies, here is my reasoning:

- The amount of money spent on the 2011 draft, and the numerous overslots are going to payoff big...some are already (too bad Team Hendry figured this out the last year you could do it)

- The (eventual?) addition of Soler will be essentially buying another top 5 system prospect, and a guy that should at least make Top 100 lists, if not Top 50 or higher.

-Javiar Baez, who was already on many top 100 lists, will vault even higher.

-The Ricketts strong Dominican investment is starting to bear some fruit(see Lukes morning write-up)

- recent total suckage at the major league level has paid off with high picks, and probably much higher in 2013

- as the summer and fall league play out there may be numerous guys who get some love in all of the prospect rankings after 2012: Junior Lake, Vogelbach, Alamora(assuming he signs) Candelario(sp)

Those of you who followed my award winning(in my own head) crype series last year know how I feel about prospects...a majority of them will bust. However it is essential that your farm system is consistently highly ranked if you want to sustain success in the bigs(for obvious reasons). Perception is often more important than reality. If you want to play with the Braves, Yankees and Red Sox, this is the way to do it.

#2 Spencer

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Posted 24 June 2012 - 09:01 AM

We still need good pitching. Lots and lots of pitching.

#3 Oswego Chris

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Posted 24 June 2012 - 09:25 AM

the pitchers were this years draft....I shoul have been more specific...I see the overall farm system breaking the top 10 this offseason...possibly top 5 by mid to end of 2013....then, hopefully it stays in the top ten range for years to come....

#4 Crockett

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Posted 24 June 2012 - 10:39 AM

Nice writeup and the only thing I disagree with is mentioning Vogelbach in any kind of positive way. At this point, he's a total non-prospect and a wasted 2nd. And I (and most published scouting guys) think it'll stay that way.

#5 Luke

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Posted 24 June 2012 - 12:25 PM

The only published report I've seen that rips on Vogelbach came from Keith Law and was based on exactly two at bats.

The most in depth report I've seen came from Jim Callis and contradicts absolutely everything Law said literally point for point.

Until we get some more real game data (I am in no way impressed or alarmed by any spring training numbers, even the extended variety) to judge from, I think it is a little premature to dismiss Vogelbach as a failure.

#6 Crockett

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Posted 24 June 2012 - 04:23 PM

Goldstein, Mayo, and another writer for Baseball Prospectus basically concur with Law. Callis' views are totally in the shower right now considering his ranking of Szczur.

#7 Luke

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Posted 24 June 2012 - 05:18 PM

The last I saw from Mayo, he had Vogelbach ranked #13 for the Cubs, the #8 first base prospect in all the minors, and was praising him for his power and advanced approach. He may have something more critical out there, but I haven't seen it yet.

Goldstein ranked Vogelbach somewhere between 10 and 15 in the Cubs' system, but he is also on record as stating that Vogelbach could emerge as a league Top 100 guy. That's hardly the language used to describe a bust, but again, there may be something more recent out there I have not seen.

And I'm sorry, but the idea that Callis has no credibility because he likes Matt Szczur is preposterous. Callis is not even the highest on Szczur within Baseball America (John Manuel ranks him in the Top 50), and his take is virtually the same as that of Jonathan Mayo.

I understand that you really, really don't like Szczur or Vogelbach and that you tend to vehemently disagree with anyone who does. That's fine. There have been plenty of highly rated Cubs' prospects that I have never liked either (Chris Carpenter being one recent example). But I would appreciate it if you provide links the next time you make a claim along the lines that "most published scouting guys" agree with that take on either. I've now wasted well over two hours this afternoon trying to find these reports that dismiss Vogelbach as a non-prospect, and I have yet to find any of them. In fact, not surprisingly given that he's just started playing in 2012, I can't find record of any of the major analysts talking about him much at all since the minor league seasons began. I do not have access to most of the pay-walled content, though. I suppose it is possible that they say one thing publicly and then something entirely different behind the paywall, but that would surprise me greatly.

We'll find out for sure when the off seasons rankings come out, though. If Vogelbach is as widely disregarded as you claim, then he shouldn't be appearing on a single list.

#8 Hector Villanueva

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Posted 24 June 2012 - 07:56 PM

I certainly agree that the system is on the rise. 11 draft class and 12 will decide if we make the jump to top ten. Some intriguing prospects but way too early to tell if they develop into legitimate top 100 prospects.

#9 Crockett

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Posted 24 June 2012 - 08:19 PM

The last I saw from Mayo, he had Vogelbach ranked #13 for the Cubs, the #8 first base prospect in all the minors, and was praising him for his power and advanced approach. He may have something more critical out there, but I haven't seen it yet.

Goldstein ranked Vogelbach somewhere between 10 and 15 in the Cubs' system, but he is also on record as stating that Vogelbach could emerge as a league Top 100 guy. That's hardly the language used to describe a bust, but again, there may be something more recent out there I have not seen.

And I'm sorry, but the idea that Callis has no credibility because he likes Matt Szczur is preposterous. Callis is not even the highest on Szczur within Baseball America (John Manuel ranks him in the Top 50), and his take is virtually the same as that of Jonathan Mayo.

I understand that you really, really don't like Szczur or Vogelbach and that you tend to vehemently disagree with anyone who does. That's fine. There have been plenty of highly rated Cubs' prospects that I have never liked either (Chris Carpenter being one recent example). But I would appreciate it if you provide links the next time you make a claim along the lines that "most published scouting guys" agree with that take on either. I've now wasted well over two hours this afternoon trying to find these reports that dismiss Vogelbach as a non-prospect, and I have yet to find any of them. In fact, not surprisingly given that he's just started playing in 2012, I can't find record of any of the major analysts talking about him much at all since the minor league seasons began. I do not have access to most of the pay-walled content, though. I suppose it is possible that they say one thing publicly and then something entirely different behind the paywall, but that would surprise me greatly.

We'll find out for sure when the off seasons rankings come out, though. If Vogelbach is as widely disregarded as you claim, then he shouldn't be appearing on a single list.


One issue with your stance here is that the #13 prospect in the Cubs system (or anything below about #5-6) is really nothing to write home about at all. Cubs system was extremely top-heavy and remains so until we see some of the new draftees. Vogelbach has one tool. If he were drafted in the 5th-8th rounds last year (where he was projected), then no one would be talking about him. Just because Wilken made a reach pick, doesn't mean the guy is much of anything.

And yes, I tend to disagree with the BA guys based on what I see (I see quite a few minor league games over the summer) and based on other scout/writers who seem to have a much better eye than they do.

#10 chirogerg1

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Posted 24 June 2012 - 08:55 PM

Vogelbach most certainly has at least two solid tools: plus-plus power and solid-average hit, and he plays a position that requires the less defensive ability than others (I'm sure he is adequate at fielding routine grounders and catching balls from across the diamond).




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