What the Kris Bryant Draft Means for The Cubs

Kris

Thursday, at the Major League Baseball draft, the Chicago Cubs made a surprising move by not drafting the power arm of Jonathan Gray from Oklahoma after the Houston Astros chose Mark Appel from Stanford with their first overall pick. It was assumed by many that they would pick whomever the Astros would not take. They instead chose Kris Bryant from San Diego with their second pick.

I like them taking Bryant once Appel was off the board. While Gray is a great power arm that hits 100 mph with his fastball, Bryant has huge power and out homered a majority of the other Division I colleges by himself as he hit 31 home runs in only 228 ABs that will have an immediate impact in the middle of the lineup when his time is to be in Chicago.

It’s no secret the Cubs need some better arms in the organization. They’ve made some pretty picks in the last two years with Pierce Johnson and Duane Underwood last year and Dillon Maples in 2011. If you take out Maples couple of real bad starts, both he and Johnson have been pitching well. Underwood will be pitching for the short season Boise Hawks later this summer. It should be known that after the Bryant pick they did pick up pitchers with 19 of their draft picks this year. I haven’t had a lot of time to delve into those picks yet to see if there were any good arms in those picks, though it is worth noting a lot of these kids are college pitchers rather than kids being drafted out of high school. I like this move too.

What does this move mean for the Cubs? Continue reading

O’Koyea Dickson is Powering His Way to the Los Angeles Dodgers

Dickson

The Los Angeles Dodgers have been in the news as much as any baseball franchise over the past year-plus. Following a highly-publicized team sale and offseason spending spree, they have stumbled out of the gate and looked lost so far during the 2013 season sitting in last place in the National League West. While things look bleak at the big league level, there are reasons to be optimistic when considering their minor league system. Rising slugger O’Koyea Dickson is one of those bright spots, as he is starting to emerge as one of the team’s best prospects.

The 23-year-old Dickson is a powerfully built 5’11” right-handed hitter, who has played primarily at first base during his professional career.  He grew up in the Bay Area and got his start in the game from the First Base Foundation, which serves minority youth in that region. Continue reading

Houston Astros’ Rebuilding Process Being Helped by Prospects Like Mike Foltynewicz

Folty

With a 1962 New York Mets-esque 13-33 record, the Houston Astros have a lot of holes they will need to fill if they want to have any chance of respectability in the future. Fortunately, they have thrown themselves into rebuilding through player development, and have a number of young prospects who are looking like they will be major pieces in the coming years. Among the team’s top young pitchers is Mike Foltynewicz, who is getting closer and closer to a spot in the major league starting rotation. Continue reading

Mike Augliera: Boston Red Sox Pitching Prospect Talks Baseball

Augliera

The Boston Red Sox have some of the better-known pitching prospects in baseball with Rubby De La Rosa, Allen Webster and Matt Barnes all leading most peoples’ lists. It turns out that they are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to Boston’s farm system, as there are a number of other promising young arms being developed, including last year’s fifth-round draft choice, Mike Augliera.

The 22-year-old right-hander attended Old Bridge High School in New Jersey. He later became a college star at Binghamton University, where he is the all-time leader in wins (23) and innings (298.1). As a senior, he led the NCAA with an 83/7 strikeout-to-walk ratio, showing his excellent control. Continue reading

Lewis Brinson is Up Next for the Texas Rangers

Brinson

When star outfielder Josh Hamilton left the Texas Rangers to sign with the divisional rival Los Angeles Angels this past offseason, it was believed the team would struggle to find his replacement. After all, the former MVP has 162 game averages of .320 with 35 home runs and 120 RBI during his career.

While it may take a little time, the Rangers may already have Hamilton’s replacement in their system. His name is Lewis Brinson, and he is one of the best young players in the minor leagues.  Continue reading

Tanner Murphy: Trying to Catch on with the Baltimore Orioles

Tanner Murphy

Photo By: Bryan Green

The Baltimore Orioles may appear to be set at catcher for the foreseeable future with Matt Wieters behind the plate, but in baseball it’s never a good idea to plan too far ahead. Like any smart team, Baltimore continues to cultivate catching prospects, with Tanner Murphy being one of the young players they are most excited about. Continue reading

Kevin Pillar: How the Toronto Blue Jays’ Prospect is Raking His Way Through the Minor Leagues

Pillar

The Toronto Blue Jays traded a significant amount of their minor league talent to the Miami Marlins this past offseason in a huge trade that netted Jose Reyes, Mark Buehrle and Josh Johnson among others. Despite the deal, their cupboard is far from bare. Outfielder Kevin Pillar is one of the organization’s best young players and may also be the most underrated hitting prospect in all of baseball. Continue reading