The Chicago Cubs cut seven players today, including top prospect Eloy Jimenez. Manager Joe Maddon sees all of those cut today as “major league” players, expecting to see them all in Chicago at some point.
As the Chicago Cubs trimmed down the roster to 43 players, a few notables made their exit from camp. Most notably the Cubs top prospect Eloy Jimenez, sending him and six others to minor league camp. Others cut included outfielder Jacob Hannemann, catcher Victor Caratini, pitchers Pierce Johnson and Felix Pena were optioned to Iowa. Infielder Chesny Young, outfielders Mark Zagunis and Jimenez were assigned to minor league camp.
The two players of this group that has garnered the most praise this spring are Young and Jimenez. Both made an impression on Joe Maddon–as well as the rest of the league. With no chance of making the team as well as making their case complete, the group will start working towards the minor leagues to get in at-bats, innings, etc.
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"“I don’t know when he’s going to show up, but you know he’s going to show up at some point,” Maddon said. “He’s not many, many years out, but of course he needs another solid 1 ½ years, maybe two years, at least, in the minor leagues before your want to strongly consider that. h/t Mark Gonzales, Chicago Tribune"
The future draws near
It’s easy to get excited about Jimenez when you see what he’s capable of. Jimenez made sure the baseball world knew who he was during the MLB Futures Game.
But you also have to remember that the young man is just 20 years old. We had the opportunity to enjoy the likes of Kris Bryant and Kyle Schwarber rather quickly. But they played in college. They were refined once they got into the Cubs’ system. Jimenez was a raw talent–much like Jorge Soler was–so nothing is promised with him. But he’s progressing well, and just needs to lock down the details
"“Outfield defense, running routes, base running, things to that nature, I definitely want to see him improve, and that was part of the conversation.”"
Young was another young prospect that turned heads in camp. Last year Young played at Double-A Tennessee, batting .303 with 37 RBI in 126 games. He could find himself in Iowa after his performance at camp.
Don’t forget any of these names. You’re sure to be hearing them again before this season is over.