We’re getting Season Five of ‘Better Call Saul’ *AND* Season Four of ‘Fargo’ over the next few months? Oh man, what have we done to deserve such magnificence?
- Alexa, please show me a tweet that will make me way too excited on this Sunday morning:
So Brailyn Marquez already possesses a 100 mph fastball and the coveted top spot in the @Cubs farm system.
But is it possible Marquez could actually unlock *another* level if his late adjustments in 2019 stick?
— Baseball America (@BaseballAmerica) January 12, 2020
- As BA notes, and as Bryan has discussed quite a bit, Marquez took to some adjustments very, very well as the year went on, making himself increasingly unhittable and working in the zone quite a bit more. By the time his season was wrapping up at High-A Myrtle Beach, there was nothing opposing hitters could do but flail away helplessly. Get this: Marquez’s swinging strike rate at Myrtle Beach in the second half? 20 PERCENT. One out of every five pitches he threw got some poor kid to swing and miss.
- We don’t have BA’s full top 100 prospects list, but we do have their updated top 10 Cubs prospects list, where Marquez stands as their number one. The implication of his placement, relative to Nico Hoerner, and relative to his 60 grade, is that he’s going to be considered a TOP 30 prospect in all of baseball by BA.
- Oh, also, a reminder that BA had catching prospect Miguel Amaya at number four in the system (behind Marquez, Hoerner, and Brennen Davis), although Amaya has already been ranked the top prospect in the Cubs’ system by another publication. What does that mean? It means the Cubs have four prospects that could be ranked in any order at the top of the system, depending on your personal preferences and take … and one of those four is considered a top 30 type prospect in baseball. That doesn’t mean all four are top 30 types or even top 100. My guess is that not all four are *consensus* top 100s. But all four are definitely going to be considered for the top 100 lists, and I reckon all four will be placed on at least one or two. Keep talking about how the Cubs’ farm system is crap … it’s just not true anymore. And that’s before we even talk about how many guys in the 5 to 30 range could take big leaps forward in the coming year(s) with a completely overhauled development system. If the Cubs’ farm system were a stock, I’d be smashing that “buy” button because they are deeply undervalued, including by many Cubs fans.
- Jordan Bastian has a deeper dive on Javy Baez ranking as the top infielder in baseball by Statcast’s new Outs Above Average metric. Incredible reaction time. Incredible range. Incredible hands. Incredible arm. Incredible command of the field. It all factors into what makes him El Mago out there.
- Jed Hoyer tells Patrick Mooney that the Cubs know that Adbert Alzolay is going to contribute in the bigs this year, but they haven’t settled on a role thanks to all the injuries continuing to interrupt Alzolay’s development. He notes that “roles are a bit more fluid” these days, which could hint at a multi-inning, part-time-starter type. The Cubs actually have three of those – Alzolay, Tyler Chatwood, and Alec Mills – who could all be in the “bullpen” this year, but really might mix and match in their roles. Obviously you’d love for Alzolay (or Mills) to emerge as a consistent starting pitcher this year, because he’s a guy you can have for several years in the role – but you also have to play with the hand you’re dealt, and as Bryan has explored, the Cubs need to know what Alzolay can be by the end of this season.
- Random fun fact:
First career MLB home run
6/21/1989 off Roger Clemens
4/18/1990 off Roger Clemens
8/10/1990 off Nolan Ryan
Several times in 1990-91, the White Sox had 3 guys in the starting lineup who hit their first MLB HR off a 4,000-K pitcher.
— Christopher Kamka (@ckamka) January 11, 2020
Going through my kitchen stuff and… pic.twitter.com/KtcQoT8NT3
— Dr. Javier Báez’s Bat (@Corrinasaur) January 12, 2020