An in-depth look at rising Cubs prospect Cristian Hernandez

(Photo by B51/Mark Brown/Getty Images)
(Photo by B51/Mark Brown/Getty Images) /

For a few years now, the hype when it came to Cubs prospects was largely centered around Miguel Amaya and Brailyn Marquez. But with the shine on Amaya fading fast after injuries and COVID-canceled seasons and Marquez working back from an injury of his own, the torch has been passed – largely to outfielder Brennen Davis.

But since Jed Hoyer took over, the team has done a solid job amassing a new crop of young talent – many of whom are hovering right outside the various top 100 rankings that have come out of late. One of those names on the rise is infielder Cristian Hernandez, Chicago’s third-ranked prospect, according to

Hernandez was considered by many to be the best prospect in the international class in 2020 when the Cubs signed him. Understandably, at just 18 years old, he has quite a ways to go and several hurdles to get past before even thinking about a big league debut. One thing that in undeniable however, is his potential.

Digging right into the fun stuff, after one summer in the Dominican Summer League in 2021, Hernandez slashed .285/.398/.424 with five home runs and 22 RBI in 47 games. He added in another half-dozen extra-base hits on top of that, to go along with a very intriguing 21 stolen bases in very short span. You like to see that he only grounded into one double play in that time and, more importantly, while he struck out 39 times, he also walked 30 times – showcasing a strong on-base skillset.

Those are very good numbers to start out your first actual season at a professional level. Hernandez is thought to be a future .300 hitter with solid pop. Primarily a shortstop, his ‘plus’ arm strength should allow him to play multiple positions, should the Cubs choose to take his career in that direction.

We know the Cubs love those versatile, athletic infielders – and given he’s still several years from being big league-ready, it’ll be interesting to see the development path he’s set on. Chicago can’t base who they pursue in free agency around prospects this far off, regardless of their promise, so staying flexible seems like a good bet for Hernandez.

Chicago Cubs: How does Cristian Hernandez grade out moving forward?

On a scale of 20-80, Hernandez, at age 18, grades out as follows Hit: 55, Power: 55, Run: 60, Arm: 55 and Field: 55. Not bad when you are above-average in all five categories at an early age. For reference, Davis, the Cubs’ number 1 prospect, also grades out out above-average in all five categories, giving him the potential to be a 5-tool player, as well.

Next. Cubs farm system is once again on the rise. dark

As I noted, Hernandez is currently in the same boat, albeit four years younger with a long way to go before you can probably start to think of him as a five-tool talent at the MLB level, but he is starting out on the same path nevertheless. As he continues to put it all together, it wouldn’t be surprising if with more power comes less speed as it does with so many.