Cubs Sign More IFAs, Random Cubs, Impossible Stanton Homers, and Other Cubs Bullets

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Cubs Sign More IFAs, Random Cubs, Impossible Stanton Homers, and Other Cubs Bullets

Chicago Cubs

I’ve had ‘Why Can’t This Be Love’ blaring in my head since yesterday, with word that Eddie Van Halen had passed away. Elite guitarist. So many jams.

RIP, Eddie:

•   The Cubs are still working internationally, signing two more IFAs to add to their 2019-2020 group:

•   Adding righties Rony Báez and Kenyi Perez to the group, the Cubs are now up to a whopping 24 signees from the 2019-20 class. It’s been a weird one, because the period normally would have ended in late June with the new period (2020-21) starting on July 2. But because of the pandemic, this class was extended through October 15, and the next class won’t kick off until January (the class in which the Cubs are expected to sign stud shortstop prospect Cristian Hernandez). It makes me very happy to see that the Cubs didn’t just wrap their class last summer and call it a year, because that would’ve been a whole lot of wasted opportunity given what happened. Recall, this is the class that includes catching prospects Ronnier Quintero and Brayan Altuve, and shortstop prospect Kevin Made – remember them? From the summer of 2019? This is still the same class! And those three signees ate up the vast majority of the Cubs’ IFA pool. Yet the Cubs kept grinding and finding new guys to sign, bringing in more than half of their class from December until now. Arizona Phil has the full list of signees here.

•   Also of note on signings like Báez and Perez: unlike position prospects who are often very thoroughly scouted by the time they’re in their early teens – and frequently have handshake deals in place long before the signing period opens – pitching prospects come along much slower in the signing process. They are much less likely to be top ranked (because the body and the arm develops much later), and they are also more likely to sign later with teams who simply have stayed on them. In other words, it’s a little easier to find a “scouting win” on the pitching side internationally, which is to say that it doesn’t mean these two are non-prospects just because the Cubs are getting them so late in the (longer-than-usual) period.

•   I had a lot of fun reading through the thousand+ replies to this on Twitter and Facebook and IG:

•   Just a ton of guys that you remember, but you don’t remember that you remember until someone mentions it. Who pops into your head?

•   Random plug for the FB page, with that in mind – smack that like button, please and thanks:

•   I’m thinking about the Cubs on both sides of the ball when I see something like this:

•   The Cubs did wind up adding some nice velocity to their bullpen for this past season, though a MINIMUM at 94.2 mph is … yo. And then I think about how the Cubs were one of the six worst teams in baseball hitting fastballs, and I believe were at the very bottom against premium velocity fastballs, and I wonder if they somehow would’ve had more than 18 strikeouts last night against the Rays.

•   Bonus from the Rays-Yankees game – TWO Giancarlo Stanton homers to watch. The guy is my favorite hitter to watch in baseball, because he does not hit normal home runs. He hits balls so hard that you just don’t even know how to register it as a baseball play. They are different. Only Stanton hits the ball like this:

•   This was Stanton’s game, by the way, with the three hardest hit balls of the night:

•   I love to think about the 1% of the time that a ball hit 118.3 mph at a 24 degree launch angle somehow turns into an out. I also love to see how that homer to right field was a 15-degree line drive that went 374 feet the other way. That is *impossible.*

•   It’s also reminiscent of this throwback against Jason Hammel and the Cubs:

•   I wish there were a Cubs game today so that I could use this:

•   Ah, but let’s be real. The Cubs wouldn’t hit any Ding Dong Johnsons today.

•   Too good not to share:

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.