Brody McCullough – Picture by Todd Johnson

Welcome to draft day! It’s finally here!

North Side Bound will be hosting its fourth draft show tonight beginning at 6 central. Greg Zumach will be the play-by-play guy and I will be the color man. We will also have Rich Biesterfield who will talk about his draft combine experience along  with another guest or two. We will be live when the first pick is made along with having some analysis about that pick. Greg and I will have plenty to say about who the Cubs could take at the beginning of the night, and some of the questions that I’m about to ask, will be answered. We will have profiles of the top two picks at some point in the night on NSB.

Early this evening, the Cubs will make the 13th selection in the 2023 MLB draft. They will also make a pick in the compensation round, after the second round. That will be pick number 68. Who those picks will be a mystery until the names are announced. Once the pick is made, just exactly how good a prospect is that pick going to be? In other words, where will they fit in on a prospect list?

That really depends on the prospect.

This draft class is really deep in talent. I’ve said multiple times there are four pitchers in this class that would rank higher than Cade Horton from last year. And if you think about it, Cade Horton is closing in on being one of the top 50 MLB prospects, and is already at number two on North Side Bound‘s latest list. More than likely, that prospect at #13 will be somewhere in the 5-7 range on the Cubs’ list to begin and they won’t even have played a game. 

If it’s a hitter, that really could throw a monkey wrench into the rankings as well. If it’s a prep guy, he might rank a little lower. If it is a college guy, he might rank a little higher. It just all depends on their floor and their ceiling. We won’t know until the pick is made.

For me the most interesting picks for the Cubs are going to come tomorrow in rounds three through six. That interest has more to do with strategy than anything else. Will the Cubs save some money and take a couple seniors at four or five? Or, will they go for more talent at those spots to give full bonuses to bulk up the system?

By the time Tuesday night gets here, the Cubs will have made 20 selections and probably will sign a few nondrafted free agents starting on Wednesday or Thursday. I would not expect too many nondrafted free agents. If the Cubs can sign 19 or 20 of the guys that they take, they might only need a couple free agent players. But based on the Tommy John attrition of last year’s class, you never know what the Cubs are going to do.

In Other News…

Pete Crow Armstrong and BJ Murray played in the Futures Game yesterday. Pete went 0-for-2 while BJ went 0-for-1 as the National League won 5-0.

The world is expecting PCA to return to Iowa after the game and not Tennessee. No one is shocked here nor should you be.

It was cool that the Cubs had both Pitchers of the Week in the Carolina League and Midwest League, respectively. The week before, Kipp went five perfect innings with seven strikeouts for the Pelicans. Cade Horton went 5.2 innings of one hit ball and struck out seven Beloit Sky Carp for South Bend. That was one fun night to photograph!

Meme of the Week

Encidido, mi amigos! Encindido!

Rethinking My Prospect List Already… with a Watch List

Normally, whenever I put out a prospect list, I want to redo it 10 seconds after I put it out. That’s not any different this time as I would love to redo the one I put out a couple weeks ago. As most of you know, I tend to write things ahead of time, except for the NSB Daily post. So, the prospect list that I put out at the end of June was actually written about three weeks before when I was in a hotel room in Cedar Rapids. With that in mind, I would make a few changes like returning Kevin Alcantara to top-five status and leaving a space for the upcoming first round draft pick for this year. 

I also began making a watch list of players I might add to my next list that are currently in either of the Dominican or Mesa with a couple at Myrtle Beach. At the top that list are Kenyi Perez, who is at Myrtle Beach, and Brandon Birdsell, who is at South Bend. Chris Paciolla is also on there as is Parker Chavers, who should be at High-A South Bend soon. I also have a couple of guys in the Dominican I’m kind of watching too. One is a pitcher Zhiorman Imbriano and the other is Joan Delgado, an outfielder, and shortstop Angel Cepeda. My DARK HORSE is Ramon Eriandys who is tearing up the DSL. If Brander Guevara gets assigned to a DSL team, you can add him to my watch list, too.

Pictures of the Week

Cards of the Week

Whenever a player is called up to the big leagues, I tweet a congrats tweet with 4 cards I have made of them over the years. These have two cards made from my pics from when he was in South Bend.

Coming Up Next Week

As previously mentioned, I will be live blogging the draft on Monday and Tuesday. I will not be filing any transactions Tuesday because the minor league teams are off until Friday. So, you can expect to see a lot of “official” moves on Friday. I am sure we will see “Instagram” moves throughout the week.

Starting on Wednesday next week, I’m going to begin profiling each of the Cubs draft picks starting with the third round pick and going all the way to 20. Those are probably going to happen every week on Wednesday through Saturday for five weeks. I will also do any undrafted free agents after I do the 20th round pick.

I will be in Davenport on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday next weekend with South Bend. I don’t have any interviews planned. Then again, I did not expect to do three in Beloit.

In addition to the draft profiles, there will be some post-draft analysis, guessing where the new guys will go, and reviewing the draft class as a whole.

Jam of the Week

No one else sounds like Dwight Yoakam. No one. He is a guitarist’s singer because of his voice and how it intermingles with the different range of the guitar. I have loved him since “Guitars and Cadillacs” in 1986 and have every record since. Yes, one can like country, jazz, rock, bluegrass, and all kinds of music. I do.