This week marked, among many major league dates and deadlines, the open of minor league free agency.
That means, over the coming weeks, we’ll learn of the Cubs picking up new minor leaguers who put in their time in other orgs but never quite made the 40-man roster. (The signing of veterans to minor league deals tends to come later – those are big league free agents.)
It also means we find out which to-be free agents the Cubs were able to retain on minor league deals, and it looks like the answer is: several of the ones you’d want to see the Cubs keep! Woo hoo!
Bryan has the digest (though not that Rondon *is* a free agent):
Not on this list: Jhonny Pereda, Luis Lugo, Oscar de la Cruz, Charcer Burks, Roberto Caro, Erick Castillo, Manuel Rondon.
I am assuming these players signed minor league successor contracts and will be back in 2020. Great news! https://t.co/a9RuV981Yv
— Cubs Prospects – Bryan Smith (@cubprospects) November 7, 2019
Among the biggest names on there are Jhonny Pereda, who recently won the Gold Glove for the entire minor leagues for his defense at catcher, and Oscar de la Cruz, the big and talented righty who has never quite fulfilled the promise of his lower-level success and scouting reports.
Note that the guys who were re-signed are still eligible for the Rule 5 Draft. I’m not sure there’s much risk in any of them being selected, as Pereda is probably the best of the bunch, and even he still has a lot to show before he reaches the big leagues – his glove is great, but he hit just .241/.336/.305 at AA this year. Not sure how a big league club could even attempt to keep him on the 25-man roster for part of 2020.
Meanwhile, the Cubs’ minor league free agents are:
- RHP: Trevor Clifton (AAA), Enrique de los Rios (HiA), Chih-Wei Hu (AA), Erick Leal (AA), Allen Webster (AAA), Alex Wilson (AAA)
- LHP: Manuel Rondon (AA)
- C: Taylor Davis (AAA), Will Remillard (AA)
- 1B: Yasiel Balaguert (AA)
- 2B: Phillip Evans (AAA)
- 3B: Gioskar Amaya (AA)
- SS: Dixon Machado (AAA)
- OF: Johnny Field (AAA), Chris Pieters (AA)
You can see the full list of minor league free agents from the other organizations here at Baseball America.