The Cubs look to be going for more power arms with wipeout sliders and they acquired another one today in Ben Brown from the Phillies in return for reliever David Robertson.
Brown is a 22-year-old right-hander who was the 7th ranked prospect on the Phillies by Baseball America. He had a 3.05 ERA at High A Jersey Shore this year with 105 Ks in 73 IP. Not too shabby at that level. He was recently promoted to Double-A Reading but had yet to pitch there.
The Phillies drafted him in 2017 out of Ward Melville High School in East Setauket, New York.
Look for him to head to Double-A Tennessee tomorrow or the next day.
Here is what MLB Pipeline said of him.
Brown is a big, strong-bodied right-hander with a power repertoire, all coming from a 6-foot-6 frame. He’s been throwing his fastball in the 95-98 mph range and he backs it up with a pair of breaking pitches he misses bats with. He’ll throw his hard slider up to 90 mph and also will come in with an 84-87 mph curveball, and they are distinct pitches.
Brown is definitely control over command right now, understandable as a raw, projectable high school draftee who had managed to pitch just 100 1/3 innings over his first five summers of pro ball because of the injury. He’s being developed as a starter right now so he can continue to work on all his pitches and to make up for lost development time, but it’s not hard to dream about his power stuff working really well in shorter stints out of the bullpen.
I like the return. So does Greg Zumach. But don’t be surprised if the Cubs go for more big-armed guys if or when they make another deal. Let’s go to the video.