Kevin Alcántara- Picture by Todd Johnson
Tonight, MLB dropped their top 100 prospect list and the Cubs placed three players in the top 100 in Pete Crow Armstrong (15), Cade Horton (68), and Kevin Alcántara (75).
After a season of injury and a slow star it may not be a surprise that Brennen Davis was left off the list. A healthy rest of the season should change that calculus, but right now it’s more just hoping that Davis strings together some healthy at-bats and hits. He has the talent to make the doubters look silly. It’s up to him to do it.
Kevin Alcántara hasn’t had the dominant start of the season some had hoped, but his ranking wasn’t impaired by that according to Pipeline. After enduring the cold Midwest League spring, Alcántara could could fly up the rankings with a great season at South Bend and possibly a second half in Tennessee.
That Cade Horton is a bad man and he was so bad (as in good) that the Cubs promoted their 2022 first round pick to HiA already. His South Bend debut wasn’t as spectacular, but that’s to be expected. Horton possesses the type of repertoire that should lend itself to swing and miss, but will need to be bolstered by other pitches to complement the fastball/slider combo he throws now.
What Pete Crow-Armstrong is showing in the early going is encouraging. PCA could end up in Chicago if he continues on his current trajectory. He’s not a finished product and we’d like to see a bit more patience and less chase at the plate. Still, it’s hard to knock a plus CF defense, power, and speed combo from Pipeline’s 15th ranked prospect.
The name that feels absent is Ben Brown. While it’s early in the year it’s clear Brown has the type of arsenal, success, and underlying data to suggest he should be in the Top 100 prospects in baseball. It’s hard to think of a team that wouldn’t jump at the opportunity to add a near ready MLB starting pitcher to their ranks.
It may not seem exciting to only see three names, but that’s largely just chatter. Ben Brown is a Top 100 caliber player. Matt Mervis, Chris Morel, and Miguel Amaya played their way to Chicago, and Jordan Wicks is having a strong start to his season in AA. We’ll see who among the Cubs’ system forces their way to national recognition.