Chicago Cubs Minor League Recap: Matt Shaw may be the third baseman of the present

The top two levels of the Chicago Cubs farm were great this week with stellar performances from some of the best prospects in the system.
Matt Dirksen/GettyImages
3 of 4

Pitchers of the Week

Michael Arias

RHP (AA Tennessee Smokies)

2 G, 4.0 IP, 2.25 ERA, 4 H, 2BB, 6 K

Michael Arias was a monster this week. He was a monster last season in Low-A as well, but he struggled a bit after getting the call-up to High-A South Bend.

The Cubs have made the decision to move Arias to the bullpen and it appears to be paying early dividends, as his erratic nature is a little more acceptable from a reliever than it is from a starter.

The stuff is still filthy, as proven by the fact that he’s striking out 13.5 batters per nine innings at a higher level of difficulty. If he continues to pitch this way he could be on the fast track to the majors like Daniel Palencia was last season.

Nick Dean

RHP (Low-A Myrtle Beach Pelicans)

1 G, 3.1 IP, 2.70 ERA, 2 H, 1 BB, 8 K

Nick Dean was the Cubs’ 19th-round pick out of Maryland last season. To start the year, he came in as a reliever and put together an extremely solid debut.

In his brief stint in the game, he faced a total of 13 batters. He walked one, allowed two hits, and struck out eight of them. 

Dean wasn’t a huge strikeout guy at Maryland, in fact in half of his seasons there he averaged less than one strikeout per inning (which in college ball isn’t anything special, especially in the Big Ten). 

That being said, the Cubs may have unlocked something in him over the winter and it’ll be very interesting to see how the rest of his season goes.