A third domino has fallen in Chicago. This time, to the crosstown rival Chicago White Sox. The Chicago Cubs sent late-inning reliever Ryan Tepera to the South Side in exchange for left-handed pitching prospect prospect Bailey Horn.
With Tepera on an expiring contract, it makes sense as a rental that he was dealt in a get what you can scenario here. Though nowhere near the return the Chicago Cubs received for Andrew Chafin, it is still another prospect with an upside the Cubs will hope to utilize moving forward.
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After having Tommy John surgery in 2017 and red-shirting from McLennan to Auburn, Horn was selected in the fifth round of the 2020 draft by the Chicago White Sox. The left-hander posted a 3-1 record with an ERA of 2.08 to go along with 14.0 strikeouts per nine innings. With no minor league season in 2020 due to the pandemic, Horn began pro ball this year at the Low-A affiliate, Kannapolis Cannon Ballers.
In six games started and eight total appearances, he went 1-2 with a 2.63 ERA in 27.1 frames. He quickly rose up to High-A where he is yet to find the same success. He sits with a 1-1 record and 13.09 ERA, allowing 16 earned in 11 innings pitched.
Horn sports a four-pitch mix of a fastball, slider, curve and change-up. His fastball and slider are his two main pitches, though his biggest issue in his young career has been control. He currently owns a 2.091 WHIP in High-A.
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Horn’s current ETA for his big league arrival, assuming he gets it back together, is 2023. He will surely rapidly rise back up the ranks should he get back to the form he saw in 2020 at Auburn and to begin the year in Low-A in 2021. This is a decent move for the Cubs. A player with upside for a player on an expiring contract anyway that if you want back, you can re-sign in the offseason.
Tepera posted a 2.91 ERA in 2021 and 3.23 in 64 innings of work between 2020 and 2021 with the Cubs. His efficiency will surely be missed. Upon arrival, Bailey Horn slides into the #30 prospect spot in the Chicago organization.