Baseball Prospectus's Preseason Top 101 Features Three Cubs Prospects, But Maybe Not the Three You'd Expect

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Baseball Prospectus’s Preseason Top 101 Features Three Cubs Prospects, But Maybe Not the Three You’d Expect

Chicago Cubs

If you’d told me that the Chicago Cubs would place three prospects in Baseball Prospectus’s new preseason top 101 prospect list, I would’ve said, yeah, that sounds about right. After all, we just discussed Baseball America’s new list, and it included the three Cubs prospects you’d most expect to see on such a list: outfielders Pete Crow-Armstrong, Brennen Davis, and Kevin Alcántara.

Except the thing is, while the Cubs do have three positional prospects on the BP list, only Pete Crow-Armstrong is the same. The three listed Cubs:

28. Pete Crow-Armstrong, OF

80. Owen Caissie, OF

88. Matt Mervis, 1B

Well how about that. Some of my reactions:

  • Looking more and more like PCA is going to settle into consensus top-30 status to open the season.
  • I am a big believer in Owen Caissie’s bat (he raked, outside of his first month, at High-A as a guy who didn’t turn 20 until July), but I thought the questions about his ability to handle an outfield corner would keep him off top-100-type lists until he showed scouts a little more. So this is either a belief in the glove having a floor, or the bat being truly special.
  • Matt Mervis *DID* make a top-100 list after all! You love to see it. Many won’t do it because it was just one year of breakout from an older player who may be merely passable at first base, but I don’t think you could argue with spotting him at 88.
  • Brennen Davis falls entirely out of the top-101 because of the year mostly lost to back issues. I don’t like it (I’d probably would still have him in the top-75 based on the upside), and I think he could very quickly be right back in the top-50. But he’s missed a lot of time. He’ll have to show that he’s not worse off for it.
  • I don’t quite know how you could have Caissie in the top-80 but not have Kevin Alcántara in the top-100. I guess Caissie performed at a higher level, but Alcántara is younger and can play capable center field. They both have the potential to be absolute monsters at the plate, but I get the sense that more see Alcántara as potentially even monster-y-er.
  • Do we now get to say the Cubs have “five top-100” prospects? And what if Jordan Wicks makes the MLB Pipeline top-100, as he might? Six! … In reality, what it says is that the Cubs really do – just like last year – have a ton of guys who are in that 101 to 150 range. That is absolutely great on its own. High-quality depth matters. But what you’d like to see is a bunch of those guys CLEARLY breaking out into sure-fire top-100 types (or, heck, just exploding right up to the big leagues and contributing – skip the top-100 step entirely … ).

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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.