Chicago Cubs: Top 30 Prospects – No. 30 to No. 21

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Mar 26, 2015; Mesa, AZ, USA; Chicago Cubs outfielder Matt Szczur (41) during a spring training game against the Los Angeles Angels at Sloan Park. Mandatory Credit: Allan Henry-USA TODAY Sports
Mar 26, 2015; Mesa, AZ, USA; Chicago Cubs outfielder Matt Szczur (41) during a spring training game against the Los Angeles Angels at Sloan Park. Mandatory Credit: Allan Henry-USA TODAY Sports /
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#22 Christian Villanueva (3B/1B)

Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports /

2015 Stats (Tennessee Smokies and Iowa Cubs)

.257/.314/.438, 129 G, 20 HR, 95 RBI, 23 2B, 35 BB

Villanueva was acquired by the Cubs in July 2012 in a trade with the Rangers that sent Ryan Dempster to Texas, and also brought back Kyle Hendricks. Villanueva has had an up and back career with the Cubs organization but bounced back nicely after a 2014 season in which the wheels came off.  At 24 years old, Villanueva spent the 2015 season with the Cubs Triple-A team, where he batted .259 with 18 homers and 88 RBIs in 123 games. Villanueva is not a patient hitter and is the best defensive third baseman in the organization. Villanueva is probably major league ready but is blocked by the Cubs crowded infield at the big league level. If he continues to produce well in the minors in 2016, he could make his way to the big league club if an injury arises or he could be used as trade bait at the deadline as well.

Next: No. 21 - RHP Stinnett

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