LotW: Infielder Arriving


With five teams in five leagues to follow, it can be tough for one player to stand out and pick up a Cubbies Crib Minor League Line of the Week. When someone raises their batting average by nearly .200 in the month of June, though, it does get my attention.

This week’s winner has been on the Baseball America Cubs’ Top 30 list in the past, and I think there is a good chance we’ll see him in Wrigley in a few years. If we ever name an All-Cub Football Team, this guy would be on it. But he plays in the middle infield, and that’s a crowded spot in the Cubs farm system, so I think he has flown under the radar a bit. This week’s winner is…

Logan Watkins, left handed hitting second baseman for Daytona. He has the speed to play in center, and could probably handle short as well. He doesn’t have much power. His game relies on speed and getting on base. If you imagine a left handed Darwin Barney, you won’t be too far off the mark, although I think Watkins is faster.

After an awful April and a mediocre May, Watkins exploded in June with an OPS of 1.075 for the month. He cut back on the strikeouts, raised his walk rate, added .200 onto his on base percentage, and now is dominating the Florida State League. If Junior Lake struggles in Tennessee and gets sent down, I think Watkins might be the next guy to move up. Regardless, he should be in Double A in 2012.

I’m not so sure he’ll still be with the Cubs. At second base, he is in line behind Barney, LeMahieu, and possibly Flaherty. At short, he is behind Castro, Barney, and possibly Marwin Gonzalez. In center, he is behind Jackson, Szczur, Campana, and Ha. In short, he is probably blocked at all three of his best positions. That doesn’t mean he can’t crack the Cubs roster as a backup, but it does mean he is a guy who it would make sense to move in a trade. Anyone needing a second baseman has probably penciled him in on a list of prospects to scout at some point. If the Cubs are active in the trade market again this winter, I think Watkins will be a guy teams ask about.

But for now, he’s ours, and he is this weeks winner of the Line of the Week.