Cubs Prospects, Instructional League, Darvish Still Getting the Business, and Other Bullets

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Cubs Prospects, Instructional League, Darvish Still Getting the Business, and Other Bullets

Chicago Cubs

I have unsuccessfully been trying to shift my sleep schedule back into an “offseason” mode, where instead of being up until midnight every night and then sleeping until one of the kiddos is screaming in my face for breakfast, I could try to be in bed before 11 so that I could get up like a normal human in the morning.

  • Great stuff from Cubs farm director Jaron Madison at, talking at length about a number of the prospects in the Arizona Fall League, about Adbert Alzolay’s recovery, and about the Cubs’ efforts to show some of their stateside prospects what it’s like in the Dominican Republic for young players.
  • 2018 top pick Nico Hoerner, who missed the end of the season with an elbow injury but is back in action in the AFL, comes in for high praise: “The only other guy we sent to the Fall League in his first year was Kris Bryant, and he ended up turning into a pretty good player. Nico has a special makeup, he’s a special kid and presence and leader. I only got a chance to spend a couple days with him when we did our rookie orientation, but he really stands out as a leader and a guy who is going to be an impact player in the clubhouse and on the field.”
  • One informational update from Madison: the reason we didn’t hear anything out of instructional ball after the minor league seasons ended is because the Cubs have moved instructional ball to January. As the name implies, that’s when minor leaguers work on specific things to improve their game in a controlled environment. Now, prospects will get rest after a season, and instead work on things before their next season begins.
  • In last night’s AFL action, pitching prospect Bailey Clark threw 1.2 scoreless with a walk and a couple strikeouts (against a lineup that was mashing against the other pitchers in the game), and Jhonny Pereda had a single in four at bats, and gave up three stolen bases behind the plate.
  • With the Dodgers on the doorstep of the World Series once again, apparently the local papers are dredging up memories of Yu Darvish’s meltdown against the Astros. Let’s not be like that next year when he comes back for the Cubs, relentlessly beating him over the head with references to what (didn’t) happen(ed) in the 2018 season. This season, like the World Series, sucked. He was hurt, he tried to work through it, and it couldn’t happen because he was in more pain than anyone really understood.
  • Darvish wound up having a minor surgery late in the year, which will hopefully help in the healing process for the stress reaction that troubled him. A healthy Darvish remains a key part of the Cubs’ rotation going forward.
  • Fergie Jenkins does the old baseball cards thing, and I love these:

  • What this young man has accomplished is incredible, and the impact of this kind of inclusion will spread widely to so many people. It means a lot to me. Sports, they can be very powerful:

  • I can’t quite say how or why, but I feel like I’ve heard/read people reference “Instant Pot” a lot over the past month. So I looked it up on Amazon, and, rather than a recreational activity in Colorado, it appears to be a useful kitchen device. It is also 20% off today.

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.