What I’m Reading
• Caleb Kilian put together quite possibly the best pitching performance in AFL history. No exaggeration. Read the full rundown from Greg Zumach right here at NSB.
Caleb Kilian was on another level in last night’s AFL Championship. 6IP, 0H, 0ER, 0BB, 8K, 14 whiffs, and a 33.8 CSW%@IvyFutures breaks down Kilian’s pitching arsenal and how each pitch played for the RHP who is knocking on the door to Wrigley.https://t.co/Z65o9nOIKL— North Side Bound (@NSideBound) November 21, 2021
• We often get caught up in the guys that currently find themselves on top prospect lists right now. But what about the fellas that were once on those lists or might be in the future? We should keep an eye on those guys, too.
“I’ve had the chance to ask multiple minor leaguers who we, as fans/writers, aren’t talking enough about. Plenty of friends and roommates get tossed around, but the common name that always gets mentioned? Nelson Maldonado.”— Greg Huss (@OutOfTheVines) November 20, 2021
📸: @biest22 https://t.co/ukvXuDcMcR pic.twitter.com/gXpLMGMBMo
• Brailyn Marquez The Weapon ™️
From Earlier – MiLB Mailbag – Brailyn Marquez Is Basically Schrodinger’s Cat https://t.co/ukA8WkBdDc— Todd ⚾️🐻🦌 (@CubsCentral08) November 24, 2021
• I’m gonna try to hide this bad news within this article. Miguel Amaya. Tommy John. No good.
Tommy John Sugery ‘Imminent’ for Miguel Amaya https://t.co/2yJvmBbQFc— North Side Bound (@NSideBound) November 23, 2021
• But hey, there might be some optimism for Miggy coming out on the other end of a long rehab process!
The reported elbow surgery of Miguel Amaya has many questioning what may lie ahead for the young catcher. Let's dive into what the evidence says.— North Side Bound (@NSideBound) November 24, 2021
Featured photo of Miguel Amaya by Rich Biesterfeld (@biest22) https://t.co/VgBYGBVJ7L
What I’m Watching
• One week, there won’t be a Nelly highlight to show here. This is not that week.
Nelson Velazquez continues his monster season! The @Cubs prospect slams an RBI double off the left field wall to kick off the scoring affair at Salt River! @NBCSChicago pic.twitter.com/SYv2shmRnI— MLB's Arizona Fall League (@MLBazFallLeague) November 19, 2021
• If you want the video highlights from Kilian’s dominant outing in the AFL championship game, we’ve got you covered right here!
WATCH: Caleb Kilian Dominates the AFL Championship https://t.co/LQzN1RPpAQ— North Side Bound (@NSideBound) November 21, 2021
What We’re Tweeting
• There are so many dudes that lost a significant amount of time last year due to injury. One of my favorites is Jack Patterson and man, I can’t wait to see him back on the bump in 2022.
This is a tweet about Jack Patterson and how pumped I am to see him absolutely shove when he comes back from injury.— Greg Huss (@OutOfTheVines) November 17, 2021
• Maybe burying the lede, but the biggest news of the week was Nelson Velazquez and Ethan Roberts being added to the 40-man roster. Big, huge congrats to those guys. Two of my favorites in the system.
Say hello to your newest Chicago Cubs, RHP Ethan Roberts and OF Nelson Velazquez. Both were added to the 40-man roster today.— Greg Huss (@OutOfTheVines) November 19, 2021
Roberts (AA/AAA): 54 IP, 3.00 ERA, 0.96 WHIP, 32.6% K, 7.7% BB
Velazquez (A+/AA): .270/.333/.496, 23 2B, 20 HR, 17 SB
• Speaking of Roberts, look at these stupid good numbers.
A reminder of Ethan Roberts' numbers from 5/13 to 8/1 (every Double-A appearance except for his first 2)— Greg Huss (@OutOfTheVines) November 19, 2021
29 IP, 1.24 ERA, 0.79 WHIP, 39.6% K, 9.0% BB, .130 opp. AVG
• Maybe a guy to look out for in the actual draft portion of the Rule 5 Draft!
Since the Cubs have some 40-man roster spots available, let’s have some fun. I’d love to see them draft Kramer Robertson from the Cardinals in the Rule 5 Draft. Just finished his age-26 season as a SS/2B/3B in AAA.— Greg Huss (@OutOfTheVines) November 22, 2021
.253/.366/.414, 114 wRC+
17.4 K%, 13.3 BB%
11 HR, 11 SB
• In addition to being really talented as baseball, Velazquez is a bonafide winner everywhere he goes.
If Nelson Velazquez and the Solar Sox win tonight, it will be Nelson's fourth ring in the minors. He won titles in Rookie League, Eugene, and South Bend. Every. Single. Year.— Todd ⚾️🐻🦌 (@CubsCentral08) November 21, 2021
Pic by Me… pic.twitter.com/PQBqnYCsGu
What’s Catching My Eye
• Are the Cubs lowkey good at drafting? Safe to say I don’t have the corresponding numbers for other teams, but what Brad lays out below feels impressive.
Nelson Velazquez is the 4th player from the Cubs' 2017 draft to reach the 40 man. Ethan Roberts is the second from 2018, but he should be joined by Brennen at some point this summer.— Brad (@ballskwok) November 19, 2021
• This Rule 5 protection window is over, so who’s gonna be the nerd to start talking about next year’s window? Oh, that’s already happened? Our guy Bryan is all over it.
Early look at *some* players who will be first-time eligible for 2022 Rule 5 Draft, one year from now, making next season a big one:— Cubs Prospects – Bryan Smith (@cubprospects) November 20, 2021
Cole Roederer, Kohl Franklin, Yohendrick Pinango, Richard Gallardo, Ryan Jensen, Chase Strumpf, Michael McAvene, Chris Clarke, Cayne Ueckert.
• 🎶 The boys are back in town 🎶
🎙 WELCOME BACK 🎙— South Bend Cubs (@SBCubs) November 23, 2021
The South Bend Cubs welcome back @BKingSports and @MaxThoma to the broadcast booth for the 2022 season! Both King and Thoma will call all #SBCubs home and road games on @Sportsradio960 and all home televised games. @WatchMarquee #Cubs #SBCubs pic.twitter.com/oXhGWctaQM
• Nelly is an MVP
Cubs outfield prospect Nelson Velazquez is your 2021 Arizona Fall League MVP!— MLB Pipeline (@MLBPipeline) November 20, 2021
➡️ https://t.co/7xf9ntr8QB pic.twitter.com/fwHnMkvTFv
• The Chicago Cubs organization simply cannot stop winning championships.
So, I think the Cubs Minor League Championship Streak is still alive:— Luke Blaize (@ltblaize) November 23, 2021
2021 – Mesa (AFL)
2020 – no minors
2019 – South Bend
2018 – Eugene
2017 – Arizona
2016 – Myrtle Beach, Eugene
2015 – Myrtle Beach
2014 – Kane County
2013 – Daytona
Feature photo by Rich Biesterfeld