Another Prospect List: John Sickels Ranks the Cubs' Top Prospects

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Another Prospect List: John Sickels Ranks the Cubs’ Top Prospects

Chicago Cubs

Another day, another Chicago Cubs prospect list – together with the Hot (or Lukewarm) Stove, prospect lists are what makes this time of year excellent for baseball fans.

Enough fluff. On with the list – this one comes from Minor League Ball‘s John Sickels.

1) Brett Jackson, OF, Grade B+: Love the broad base of skills.

2) Trey McNutt, RHP, Grade B+: Hard to believe this guy was a 32nd round pick. . .he’s got great stuff.

3) Chris Archer, RHP, Grade B+: Another hard-thrower who emerged as a surprise in ’10.

4) Hak-Ju Lee, SS, Grade B: I don’t know why, but I think his bat can develop more than people expect.

5) Chris Carpenter, RHP, Grade B: May end up in the pen, but he’s got plus stuff and I wouldn’t give up on him as a starter yet.

6) Jay Jackson, RHP, Grade B: I still like him more than the numbers say I should.

7) Hayden Simpson, RHP, Grade B-: Could rank at the top next year if he does anything in the pros like he did in NCAA Division II.

8 ) Brandon Guyer, OF, Grade B-: He’s always been an athlete and has added skills to go with the tools.

9) Reggie Golden, OF, Grade B-: Enormous potential but very raw.

10) Josh Vitters, 3B, Grade C+: I expect this will be controversial but he really needs to get things going, and age-relative-to-league is just one factor among many.

11) Robinson Lopez, RHP, Grade C+: High-ceiling arm, needs refinement.

12) Austin Reed, RHP, Grade C+: Huge sleeper for 2011.

13) Alberto Cabrera, RHP, Grade C+: Another live arm that needs polish.

14) Marquez Smith, 3B, Grade C+: Not young, but ready to help at the major league level and can catch people off-guard.

15) Robinson Chirinos, C, Grade C+: Like Smith, not young but can help soon.

16) D.J. LeMahieu, INF, Grade C+: I think people are a bit too down on him; he could surprise this year.

17) Rafael Dolis, RHP, Grade C+: Another guy in the live arm/needs polish brigade.

18) Brett Wallach, RHP, Grade C+: Another one.

19) Brooks Raley, LHP, Grade C+: Was very effective in the second half.

20) Su-Min Jung, RHP, Grade C+: Wasn’t great at Peoria, but I think he can get better faster than people anticipate.

21) Austin Kirk, LHP, Grade C+: Breakthrough candidate for 2011.

22) Jin-Yeong Kim, RHP, Grade C+: Will he be worth the big bonus?

Overall, the list is similar to the one recently released by Baseball Prospectus, but Sickels’ list tends to line up a bit more with the conventional wisdom at the top. Sickels remains very high on Jay Jackson, and is higher on LeMahieu than most. The two Austins – Reed and Kirk – are nicely described as possible breakout/sleepers for next year, a la Trey McNutt and Chris Archer this past year.

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Author: Brett Taylor

Brett Taylor is the Editor and Lead Cubs Writer at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at @BleacherNation and @Brett_A_Taylor.