Chicago Cubs: Riley Thompson has the makings of a future ace

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(Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)
(Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images) /

Chicago Cubs: Tools of the trade

In a piece this year from Cubs Den’s own Michael Ernst, Thompson was profiled with some impressive numbers, which hopefully will only continue to improve as he progresses in the system.

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A three-pitch pitcher, Thompson holds a four-seam fastball which has reached upwards of 97-98 mph while at Eugene as a starter. Thompson also carries a two-seam fastball which has been known to increase his likelihood of ground balls and also has a breaking ball and a plus changeup which can sit in the 84-88 mph range.

Concerning the breaking ball, Thompson can be an extraordinary talent if he can harness the power within to make the pitch work for him. As someone with insane velocity, and the changeup, if Thompson can sit on his breaking ball as a put-away pitch, it will be lights out to hitters.

On Saturday, Thompson made his second start of the young season at Class-A South Bend. Facing the Lansing Lugnuts, Thompson pitched five strong scoreless innings giving up only four hits, with a walk and five strikeouts.

So far this season, Thompson has started two games. Over that sample size, he has a 0.93 ERA in 9 2/3 innings with a 22.5% strikeout rate and insanely low 2.5 percent walk rate.