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.
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Honorable Mentions

Luis Vazquez

SS (AAA Iowa Cubs)

.500/.529/.929 2 HR, 4 R, 4 RBI, 2/4 BB/K, 1/2 SB

Luis Vazquez is a player that we’ve said over and over exists on great teams. He’s the kind of organizational depth and versatile utility infielder that has a place in the big leagues for a long time. 

Does he have the star power that Matt Shaw has? Probably not. However, he’s the kind of player that the Cubs need to work very hard to keep in the system and not lose like they lost Nelson Velazquez.

If there’s an injury to Dansby Swanson or Nico Hoerner and the Cubs don’t jump at the opportunity to give Shaw an opportunity at the highest level, it’s very likely that Vazquez is the next man up, and also quite likely that he doesn’t give up the job very easily when the aforementioned player is healthy again. 

Moises Ballesteros

C (AA Tennessee Smokies)

.273/.385/.636 1 HR, 1 2B, 4 R, 3 RBI, 2/1 BB/K

In just about any other week, this stat line would be good enough to be the prospect of the week. 

MLB Pipeline has already predicted the future and they see Ballesteros as the top Cubs prospect by the time 2026 rolls around, but if Ballesteros continues to mash like this he could already have a year’s worth of MLB at-bats under his considerable belt by that point.

Ballesteros may well have been the top-performing prospect in the system last year. He was a teenager who flew up to the AA level, having nearly as many walks (63) as strikeouts (78) while playing the most difficult position on the diamond.

The Cubs may have their catcher of the future on the major league roster right now with Miguel Amaya, but Ballesteros is going to do everything in his power to change that narrative.