Jefferson Rojas – Picture by Larry Kave/Myrtle Beach Pelicans

As most of you know, I tend to write most of my morning articles ahead of time. I wrote most of his post about two weeks ago and then added this paragraph because MLB Pipeline beat me to the punch by about four days as they looked ahead to 2025 to see who the Cubs top prospect might be. They picked Matt Shaw, the Cubs 2023, number one draft pick. I, as one of many, don’t see Shaw as someone who will be in the system in 2025. At the rate he’s currently producing, he’s going to be in Chicago by the middle of 2025.

This article, though, is a little bit different than MLB Pipeline, who picked only one player. I picked a collection of players who will be the Cubs top prospects in 2025.

Last week, I wrote about number of prospects who could be ready in the next two months, or the first two months of next year. Today’s article is going to involve a crystal ball and fast forwarding two years into the future to predict who the Cubs top prospects might be in the summer of 2025. The plan is to pick 10 players. Most of the names should still be familiar. There are a few players now who will not make the list because they will be in Chicago or used as trade capital.

In trying to come up with the 10, I wondered if that was too few as the Cubs do have a lot of young and talented prospects in the lower part of the system. You are not going to find anybody who’s currently at AA or AAA on this list that’s still a top 10 prospect in 2025. If you do, the Cubs have problems. So, almost all of the players on this list are currently in South Bend, Myrtle Beach, Mesa, and the Dominican.

These are in no particular order…

The first player I’m going to select is the Cubs 2024 first round pick. That selection is going to come somewhere in the late teens or early 20s depending on how well the Cubs do down the stretch. To go along with that pick, the 2025 first round selection should also be in the top 10 as well.

Fernando Cruz is not even a Cub yet. He is going to be easily in the top 10 prospects in 2025. The young shortstop is scheduled to sign with the Cubs on January 15, 2024. Cruz is considered o be one the top five players in this year‘s international free agent class. The shortstop is the cousin of Starlin Castro, but Cruz a totally different type of player than his kin.

Zyhir Hope is already flashing his talents in the Arizona Complex League. The former University of North Carolina commit is pretty much a five tool prospect but no one saw him adjusting this well this quickly, and we may even get to see him at Myrtle Beach once the ACL season ends on Tuesday next week.

Nazier Mule – Tommy John surgery robbed him of his first professional season. He should be playing at some point next year. It’s unclear whether that is going to be in April in Myrtle Beach or in June in Myrtle Beach. A lot of it depends on his rehab. But the shortstop/pitcher is going to be allowed to be a two-way player when he returns. With his athletic skills, he could easily be in the top 10.

Alfonsín Rosario – Like Hope, he is already flashing hard in the ACL. He has immense physical skills that reminds me of Alexander Canario, but Rosario could be a special talent as well.

Jackson Ferris – He’s not going to be ready for Chicago in less than two years, but he’s gonna be very close. He, in fact, might have the best chance on this list to be the number one prospect in the system with his plus curve and a mid 90s fastball. The young lefty should be at South Bend to start next year and not be limited by pitch counts like he was this year.

Drew Gray – The other young lefty is coming off of Tommy John surgery and has been limited by a pitch count, but should be at full strength and ready to go next summer without limitations. Like Ferris, it should be at South Bend to start the year and should be close to getting to Iowa or just arriving in Iowa in the summer of 2025.

Luis Rujano – Rujano has been really polished and impressive just one year removed from high school. The more he gets stretched out, the more I am going to like him especially once I see him in South Bend next year. He should be, like Gray and Ferris, on the border between Tennessee, and Iowa in 2025, considering maturity with which he pitches. let’s roll with Iowa.

Jefferson Rojas – by the time this summer of 2025 arrives, I would not be surprised to see Rojas playing another position. With Swanson and Hoerner entrenched as well as Matt Shaw above him, I’m wondering just exactly what room there is for Mr. Rojas. Like his aforementioned, Pelicans teammates, he should be on that Iowa club by this time in two years.

Will Sanders is one of my bonus players. He’s probably advanced enough to begin 2024 in South Bend, just based on his experience and pedigree. I would expect him to move quickly as he has the potential to be a hig quality starter if the Cubs can get all his gears in working order.

Jaxon Wiggins is another guy who should pop as a pro. The arm is talented enough to be a top 10 guy after a year and a half. How his rehab goes will determine the timing. One thing to consider is that he likely will be on a very short leash in 2024. My question for his career arc is, “How long will that leash be on coming off of TJS?”

One Hernandez Brother – I am not sure which one just yet. Who knows? It could be both! They are, after all, just 18 and 19.