Cubs Minor League Daily: The Sad Situation In Venezuela and Player Acquisition

venezuelaBen Badler of Baseball America has a very interesting article on the state of baseball in Venezuela that is well worth a read. In short, the country is getting increasingly dangerous and that means the key decision makers of few teams are willing to visit and see potential prospects first hand. That also means that more kids are focusing on their baseball career over other potential means of escaping, and as a result the talent pool is getting deeper even as their per prospect cost comes down. As the situation deteriorates and the country becomes more unstable, we may yet see this nation avoided by baseball executives to an even greater degree.

And while this is terrible state affairs for the people of the country, and a state that I do not want to trivialize in any way, it does open some possible advantages for the Cubs that (this being a Cubs’ blog and all) should be at least briefly noted. The Cubs are one of just four teams still running an academy in Venezuela, and that means they are one of four teams who have a clear advantage when it comes to scouting attracting the top talent. That could pay dividends this year as the Cubs blow up their IFA signing budget, but it should also open some opportunities in 2016 and 2017.

Thanks to their spending plans this season, the Cubs are going to be capped at spending $300,000 per player for the following two signing season. Their edge in scouting and development in Venezuela combined with the depressing situation may allow the Cubs to sign prospects for that $300k limit who would normally sign for a much higher rate. As a result, the front office may yet land a higher ratio of quality talent over the two penalty years than we would otherwise expect.

Hopefully the situation in Venezuela improves over the next year to the point that the Cubs’ potential advantage will be fairly small, but I do not think that is likely. A more likely scenario would have one of the four remaining academies closing, the Venezuelan Summer League shutting down, and possibly even the Cubs joining the vast majority of teams in pulling out of the country rather than place their employees at too great a risk. It really is getting that bad.

Scores From Yesterday

Iowa – This was a very back and forth game that the Cubs lost in the ninth. The final was 6-4.
Tennessee – Tennessee had the day off.
Myrtle Beach – Great pitching lifted the Pelicans to this 6-0 win.
South Bend – This game stayed close, but it was the Cubs who wound up with the loss. The final was 3-1.

Performances of Note

  • [Iowa] Jeffry Antigua, a former reliever, allowed 3 runs on 5 hits (including 2 home runs) over 5 innings in this one. He struck out 3.
  • [Iowa] Yoanner Negrin, pitching in relief, allowed his lone tally on a solo home run. It was also the only hit he allowed in 3 innings of work. He struck out 3 as well.
  • [Iowa] John Andreoli is may have the quietest .800+ OPS season in Triple A. He doubled and finished 3 for 3 in this one.
  • [Iowa] Matt Szczur doubled, stole his 11th base, and finished 2 for 4.
  • [Myrtle Beach] Duane Underwood turned in a gem. He tallied a Game Score of 76 by allowing nothing but 2 hits and a walk over 7 shutout innings while striking out 4. His ground out to air out ratio was was a robust 12-2.
  • [Myrtle Beach] Jacob Rogers hit his 8th home run and also doubled as part of his 3 for 4 game.
  • [Myrtle Beach] Mark Zagunis doubled, walked, and finished 2 for 4.
  • [South Bend] Zach Hedges pitched 7 strong innings in this one. He allowed a run on 3 hits and 4 walks while striking out 6.
  • [South Bend] Jesse Hodges finished 3 for 4. Gioskar Amaya, with 2 hits, had the only other multi-hit day.
  • Other News

  • The Baseball America draft database is slowing being populated with some signing numbers. You’ll note that some of the signings we’ve heard in rumors are not yet listed. That does not mean those reports are wrong, just that they are currently only reports.
  • written by

    Luke Blaize is the Minor League Editor at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at @ltblaize.

    more cubs news

    Enhanced Box Score: Pirates 9, Cubs 3 – May 17, 2024

    For six hitless, profoundly dominant innings, Paul Skenes today looked like the best pitching prospect I've seen since maybe Stephen Strasburg. The other two who came to mind as I watched were Matt Harvey and Jose Fernandez. Those three, when...

    MLBits: Elly De La Cruz Continues to Electrify, Yanks Want Soto for Long Haul, More

    Elly De La Cruz continues to dazzle and the Yankees want Juan Soto in New York for the rest of his career. That and more in today's MLB Notes! Elly De La Cruz's Four Steal Night Cincinnati Reds shortstop Elly...

    Cubs Farm Report | May 17, 2024: I-Cubs’ Homer Party Helps Cade Horton Get His First Triple-A Win

    The Iowa Cubs mashed four home runs and scored 10 runs, as Cade Horton made his best start at Triple-A on Thursday. That and more in today's Cubs Farm Report. Cubs Farm Report | May 17, 2024 Triple-A Iowa Cubs...

    Cubs Roster Moves: Brewer to the IL, Hodge to Chicago

    YES! ANOTHER CUBS PLAYER IS HITTING THE INJURED LIST! ANOTHER CUBS RELIEVER AT THAT! PLEASE DO NOT MISTAKE MY SHOUTING FOR EXCITEMENT! IT IS ACTUALLY JUST INCREDULITY AND CAFFEINE! Today the Chicago Cubs placed reliever Colten Brewer on the 15-day...

    Chicago Cubs Lineup: Seiya Sits, But PCA is Back

    CUBS LINEUP — The Cubs dropped the opener last night at Wrigley Field, but they've got a Friday 1:20 start with Kyle Hendricks on the bump (and the sun shining) today. Maybe those good vibes will be enough to take...

    Hoping on Happ and Hoerner, Steele and Jones, Murray, Roku, Vegas, and Other Cubs Bullets

    Here's hoping no Pirates players take a wrong turn in Wrigleyville and get detained trying to get into Wrigley Field. Maybe have to miss the game. (This is a Scottie Scheffler reference, for those who haven't seen the bonkers story...

    Cade Horton’s Latest Triple-A Iowa Start Came with Some Awesomeness and Some Bad Luck

    Cade Horton's latest Triple-A outing went better than the last one, though even it will come with some explanation. Officially, the line for Horton was 5.0 IP, 3 ER, 4 H, 1 BB, 3 K. Fine. Solid. Not overly impressive....

    Enhanced Box Score: Pirates 5, Cubs 4 – May 16, 2024

    The Cubs had a golden opportunity handed to them in the bottom of the eighth inning when leadoff man Seiya Suzuki was hit by a pitch and reached third on a swinging bunt (+ error) for Cody Bellinger immediately after....

    The Mini-Break Pays Off: Ian Happ with a ROCKET Home Run!

    After a red-hot first ten games of the season (172 wRC+), Ian Happ had gone ice cold offensively. Aside from continuing to take his walks (he always does), his overall production plummeted to the point where Craig Counsell game him...

    Kevin Alcantara Doubles, Matt Shaw Singles, and Moises Ballesteros HOMERS THEM ALL IN!

    Brennen Davis isn't the only hot Cubs prospect. In fact, Moises Ballesteros is basically THE hot Cubs prospect of the season so far. And tonight, after two of the Cubs top prospects — Kevin Alcantara (on a double) and Matt...

    Latest News

    Dallas Wings vs. Chicago Sky: Start Time, Streaming Live, TV Channel, How to Watch

    The Dallas Wings (1-0) hit the court against the Chicago Sky (0-1) on Saturday, May 18, 2024 at 8:00 PM ET on NBA TV, BSSW, and MARQ.Watch the WNBA all season long on Fubo!How to Watch Wings vs. SkyGame Day:...

    How to Watch Twins vs. Guardians: Live Stream or on TV

    On Saturday, Bailey Ober will start for the Minnesota Twins (24-20) against Logan Allen and the Cleveland Guardians (28-17), with first pitch scheduled for 6:10 PM ET at Progressive Field.If you're intending to watch this game, keep reading for TV...

    Giants vs. Rockies: Start Time, Streaming Live, TV Channel, How to Watch

    Kyle Harrison will take the ball for the San Francisco Giants (20-25) when they host starter Ty Blach and the Colorado Rockies (15-28) on Saturday, with first pitch at 4:05 PM ET.Keep reading to find out all the details on...

    How to Watch Dodgers vs. Reds: Live Stream or on TV

    The Los Angeles Dodgers (29-17), who will give the start to Walker Buehler, host the Cincinnati Reds (19-25) with Graham Ashcraft on the hill, Saturday at 9:10 PM ET.Keep reading to find out how to watch the Los Angeles-Cincinnati matchup...

    Las Vegas Aces vs. Los Angeles Sparks: Start Time, Streaming Live, TV Channel, How to Watch

    A'ja Wilson leads the Las Vegas Aces (1-0) into a matchup with the Los Angeles Sparks (0-1) after scoring 30 points in an 89-80 win over the Mercury. The game is on Saturday, May 18, 2024, tipping at 3:00 PM...

    Aces vs Sparks Prediction: Picks, Live Odds & Moneyline – May 18

    A game after scoring 30 points in an 89-80 win over the Mercury, A'ja Wilson leads the Las Vegas Aces (1-0) at home against the Los Angeles Sparks (0-1) on Saturday, May 18, 2024. The matchup airs at 3:00 PM...

    How to Watch Diamondbacks vs. Tigers: Live Stream or on TV

    On Saturday, Zac Gallen will start for the Arizona Diamondbacks (21-23) against Jack Flaherty and the Detroit Tigers (21-22), with first pitch scheduled for 8:10 PM ET at Chase Field.The article below will provide you with everything you need to...

    Astros vs. Brewers: Start Time, Streaming Live, TV Channel, How to Watch

    On Saturday at 7:10 PM ET, Kyle Tucker and the Houston Astros (20-25) take on William Contreras and the Milwaukee Brewers (26-18) at Minute Maid Park.If you're trying to watch this game, keep reading for TV and streaming options for...

    Rangers vs. Angels: Start Time, Streaming Live, TV Channel, How to Watch

    Jose Urena takes the ball for the Texas Rangers (23-23) when they host starter Patrick Sandoval and the Los Angeles Angels (17-28) at 7:15 PM ET on Saturday.Keep reading to see how to watch the Texas-Los Angeles matchup in the...

    Red Sox vs. Cardinals: Start Time, Streaming Live, TV Channel, How to Watch

    Kutter Crawford will take the ball for the Boston Red Sox (22-23) when they visit starting pitcher Miles Mikolas and the St. Louis Cardinals (19-25) on Saturday, with first pitch at 7:15 PM ET.Keep scrolling to find out all the...

    more cubs news