February 28, 2013; Bradenton, FL, USA; Pittsburgh Pirates left fielderFelix Pie
(26) is congratulated by managerClint Hurdle
(13) after he hit a 2-run home run during the fifth inning against the Boston Red Sox at McKechnie Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
Felix Pie signed with the Chicago Cubs as an amateur free agent in 2001. At the beginning of his minor league career, Pie would have instant success – putting the ball in play and fielding his position very well. Pie would also show some great athletic ability and speed that would help him work his way through the minor leagues. Pie’s fast start would be halted by a broken ankle. It was said that Pie was to be called up to the Cubs before that injury.
Heading into the 2007 season, Pie was being ranked at the top prospect in the Chicago Cubs system. Due to an injury to then outfielder Alfonso Soriano, Pie would be called up sooner than expected. He would make his major league debut on April 17, 2007. In that game he would face future hall of fame pitcher and former Cub great, Greg Maddux.
Pie would record a double off of Maddux and later that inning score. What may have been more impressive from his debut was a throw he made from center field to throw out a runner at home. It was a perfect throw – it made Cubs fans dream about our future cornerstone center fielder. Pie would go back to the minors to play regularly, but would be called up a few more times during the season as needed.
Pie would win the starting center field job going into the 2008 season. Due to a very slow start to the season, he would lose time to Reed Johnson. Eventually the Cubs would sign veteran free agent Jim Edmonds to be the full-time center fielder. Pie would find himself as a pinch runner and platoon player.
Pie’s time with the Cubs would end in January of 2009. The Cubs traded Pie for Garrett Olson and a minor league player. Pie never lived up to the expectations with the Cubs. A high strike out rate, inconsistent play, along with injuries never allowed Pie to match the once hyped talent. Pie would go on to play for a few other teams but never made any impact.
Next: So much potential....