What I’m Reading
• This wonderful piece by Sahadev is on my Mount Rushmore of favorite articles this year. It’s so well thought out and explained while going super deep into Developmental Needs Analysis and individual philosophies.
Two years after the Cubs revamped pitching development, velocity has jumped throughout the org, but so have injuries. Still, the latest hirings at the MLB level show the org is committed to this direction as they continue to embrace cutting edge ideas https://t.co/UTDT24svzn— Sahadev Sharma (@sahadevsharma) December 23, 2021
• Todd is always on prospect stock watch over at Cubs Insider and if you’re on our website here, I’m sure you want to get in on the ground floor of some of the best up-and-comers this system has to offer.
• I love these columns from Todd. He does such a great job of taking the thoughts that are roaming around in his head and throwing them into something great to read.
10 Things I Think – Random Thoughts About International Free Agency, Rosters, Nwogu, Comebacks, and a Virtual Convention https://t.co/BA1vk28zoa— North Side Bound (@NSideBound) December 24, 2021
• I tuned into more Pelicans games than any other affiliate last year, but who should you be watching in 2022?
North Side Bound Mailbag – Which Affiliate Will Be the One to Watch in the Spring? https://t.co/lk40yF7f9Y— North Side Bound (@NSideBound) December 27, 2021
• One of the smartest MLB Draft minds I’ve come across in my years of covering the minors is on our team here at North Side Bound. We’re just incredibly lucky that Greg Zumach covers the draft with a Cubs slant on it!
It’s always draft season at @NSideBound. Thanks for all the incredible questions. Please enjoy the North Side Bound December Draft Q&A Part 1. Look out for Part 2 on Wednesday! https://t.co/T3oMaNqf4i— North Side Bound (@NSideBound) December 27, 2021
What I’m Watching
• I will ALWAYS watch Jordan Nwogu bombs. I can’t emphasize enough how difficult it is to hit a baseball *this* far in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.
• This website is a safe space for anything related to Dan Vogelbach. Here he is in high school, the same school as another former Cubs prospect — Jeff Passantino.
Dan Vogelbach— Scouting_Baseball (@scoutingbasebl) December 24, 2021
Drafted by the Chicago Cubs in the 2nd round of the 2011 MLB June Amateur Draft from Bishop Verot HS (Fort Myers, FL). pic.twitter.com/tFjaQToyfw
What We’re Tweeting
• Life is kinda crazy for me right now, so you haven’t seen a whole lot of written action on my part. In the meantime, I put together a collection of nearly 15 takes regarding Cubs prospects. Check them out, tweet at me how I’m wrong, or praise me for being the smartest in the land. I’ll let you decide which action you wanna take.
Next week, I’m moving two states away. I’ll probably be pretty absent on this website (not logged off, of course) over the next couple weeks as I get my life in order.— Greg Huss (@OutOfTheVines) December 27, 2021
To make up for that time, here are several “If this, then that” thoughts I have regarding Cubs prospects ⬇️
• Extremely hard to argue with Jimmy’s logic here.
This guy is going to throw harder than anyone else in the history of baseball https://t.co/zD49JRXFjn— Jimmy Nelligan (@NelliganJimmy) December 23, 2021
• Do you forget that Ben Leeper was originally assigned to South Bend? Because I forget that Ben Leeper was originally assigned to South Bend.
This is your reminder that Ben Leeper was a South Bend Cub for about an hour pic.twitter.com/0i4x9TYc2V— North Side Bound (@NSideBound) December 27, 2021
• Eduarniel Nunez puts up some of the best spin rates in the entire system. Talking with his teammates, it feels like he’s a breakout waiting to happen.
We should be talking about Eduarniel a lot more than we are this winter. That's an easy 98-99 and the RPMs on the breaker have to be off the charts. https://t.co/d7UbFz1wlY— North Side Bound (@NSideBound) December 27, 2021
• Nelson Maldonado is so gifted at the plate. Just an absolutely professional hitter.
Ladies and gentlemen, I gave you the abbreviated career of one Nelson Maldonado in 2019 and 2021 at Mesa, Eugene, South Bend, and Tennessee pic.twitter.com/RR82OiLy5B— North Side Bound (@NSideBound) December 27, 2021
What’s Catching My Eye
• I think this is an extremely fair ranking of these four shortstops. Trevor is really good at what he does and it’s fun to see other folks outside of Cubs Prospects Twitter tweeting about our guys.
Since nobody asked, here are my personal rankings for the Cubs group of really solid teen shortstops:— Trevor Hooth (@HoothTrevor) December 27, 2021
1) Cristian Hernandez
2) Reginald Preciado
3) Kevin Made
4) Ed Howard
This is a really impressive and young group as a whole.
• Yonathan Perlaza was in the discussion for Cubs player of the year. That’s wild. But it helps when you put together a stretch of games that looks like this.
Yonathan Perlaza's last 46 games/184 PAs. pic.twitter.com/D4MsEllMOC— Brad (@ballskwok) December 28, 2021
• Awesome to see Caleb Kilian on a list with some of the nastiest pitchers in High-A. And a friendly reminder that he did this without even featuring a brand new (and disgusting) spike curve.
Top Stuff Rating | High-A MiLB SP— Pitcher DIGS (@DigsPitcher) December 28, 2021
1. Matt Canterino – MIN
2. Grayson Rodriguez – BAL
3. Gavin Stone – LAD
4. Daniel Espino – CLE
5. Brandon Williamson – SEA
6. Cade Cavalli – WSH
7. Caleb Kilian – SF/CHC
8. Ken Waldichuk – NYY
9. Peyton Battenfield – TB/CLE
10. Jacob Lopez – TB
Feature photo of Yonathan Perlaza by Rikk Carlson (@rikkcarl10)