Cubs: Jordan Wicks will be with the big league team before we know it

(Photo by Jamie Sabau/Getty Images)
(Photo by Jamie Sabau/Getty Images) /

Last summer, the Chicago Cubs selected Jordan Wicks with the 21st overall selection of the draft. Currently listed as the team’s seventh-ranked prospect, Wicks’ estimated call-up date is 2023, but given the way he has been pitching with the South Bend Cubs, it would be surprising if Wicks doesn’t start jumping ranks in a hurry.

This season, the former Kansas State left-hander has started in 16 games, throwing 66 2/3 innings with a 3.65 ERA and a 1.25 WHIP. Now those aren’t eye-catching numbers necessarily, especially at such a low level, but Wicks’ splits are impressive. As of now, right-handed hitters carry a batting average against Wicks of .229, and against left-handed hitters is a .313. There are obviously some things that need to be worked on, but it’s clear he’s ready to take the next step.

On July 12, Wicks made headlines with a career-high 10 strikeouts in a game, allowing one hit in five scoreless innings. So far this season, Wicks has had just three games where he allowed four or more runs, and zero games where he’s walked three or more. Something Chicago has lacked is low walk numbers. In Wicks’ 16 starts, he has just 17 walks, just over one per game. Whereas on the Cubs, Justin Steele has the eighth-most walks in the majors with 36 walks in 16 games.

Cubs: Jordan Wicks is showing the polish he was known for in college

Could we see Wicks, a guy who was lauded as perhaps the most polished pitcher coming out of last year’s draft, get a late-season call-up to Chicago? Perhaps. But he’s seeming more and more likely to make his big league debut next year, especially given the team’s struggles on the mound this season.

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The pitching now is simply not good. But looking in the future, the pitching looks quite promising, with Steele and Wicks leading the way. I am looking forward to seeing the young pitching core make their way up. Just like fans were excited when Kris Bryant and Javier Baez were coming up to the majors, between Brennen Davis, Pete Crow-Armstrong, Killian and Wicks, I am just as excited for them as I was for Bryant and Baez.