Jackson Ferris – Pic via MLB.com

I found this week rather strange due to the fact that last week only had three minor-league games. As a result, neither MLB Pipeline nor Baseball America had a prospect team of the week, players of the week, or a hot prospect list. There was not a lot of normal news other than transactions in anticipation of next week, player movement, and draft pick signings. 

I take that back…

The Good News

On Thursday, Patrick Mooney of The Athletic gave us an update on Ed Howard who is walking now and will be heading to Mesa to begin a more athletic rehab versus just getting on his feet after hip surgery. I think that is impressive for him just two months after his freak injury.

MLB Pipeline did have one article. I did not care for it. It was about a prospect from each team that could likely be traded. For the Cubs….they listed Owen Caissie. Now you can see why I did not like it.

The Draft Signing Front.

The signing deadline for draft picks is tomorrow at 5 PM. The Cubs currently only have one player left unsigned. That is Blake Batter. For Blatter, his bonus does not count against the cap except for any amount over $125,000. Unfortunately, that amount is not going to get it done as the Cubs have extra moolah left spend.

As for who is playing when, the draft picks should be starting to play this next week in Mesa and a couple should be arriving in Myrtle Beach starting next week. It will be exciting to see the few college players do fairly well in the Carolina League. I am expecting Cade Horton, Brandon Birdsell, Andy Garriola, Haydn McGeary, and Nick Hull to get some time in there this year.

The Deadline Cometh

The trade deadline is set for Tuesday, also at 5 PM. We’ll see just how much the Cubs tear down the team and what parts they can get in return. Last year, the Cubs added 11 new prospects and two major league players. They are going to have to do a lot of wheeling and dealing to get that many guys this year. I don’t see most players bringing back more than a prospect except for Wilson land Ian Happ.

Myrtle Beach Roster Turns Over but They Keep Rolling

I feel really bad for Myrtle Beach fans. In the first half of the year, the Pelicans had the best record in the minor leagues and won a playoff spot. In the second half, most of the team has been dismantled. 4/5 of the rotation is now in South Bend along with PCA, who left at the end of May, BJ Murray, relievers Sheldon Reed and Adam Laskey are there along with SS Kevin Made. Starting pitchers Tyler Schlaffer, Porter Hodge, Luis Devers, and Richard Gallardo all arrived in South Bend and are all doing fairly well and holding their own in what seems to be a big jump for a lot of players.

I will have an affiliate update on the team at some point in the next two weeks. But for now, kudos to Buddy Bailey to keep that team rolling as they are only 1.5 games out of first. The turnover does not seem to fazing Slider either.

Coming Up Next Week on North Side Bound

This afternoon I will have the July All-Star team for the Dominican Summer League and the Arizona Complex League squads. That’ll be fun as I put it together yesterday afternoon. That’ll be out around noon. On Monday, “The Breakdown” will arrive first thing in the morning and then the July All-Star team for the full season affiliates will be out around 1 or 2 PM. On Tuesday, there will be Tuesday transactions and who knows how crazy that’s going to get. I will also be live blogging the trade deadline starting about 2 o’clock in the afternoon on Tuesday. Rather have two live blogs going at the same time, I will be doing both in one post. On Wednesday, you thought you were going to get off easy, I’m going to take a look at Nazier Mule.

Jam of the Week

I have been cranking up some Counting Crows a lot while I have been on my walks and doing my mowing. I just love the song “Johnny Appleseed’s Lament” from 2014’s Somewhere Under Wonderland album, which is one of my favorite albums! I also don’t think too many people know about that album but it is chocked full of gems.