7th Round Pick- Yahil Melendez SS (HS)
There are some things you need every year at the trade deadline: a reliever or two, a lefty bench bat, a solid defender for late-game substitution purposes, etc. Yahil Melendez is a player who could be much more than a bench bat but there is a lot to like with this pick, especially in the 7th round.
Melendez is a left-handed shortstop that has the defensive prowess to stick there or move to third base. According to Keith Law, he’s also still very projectable unlike the Cubs 6th round pick, Rosario, who by most accounts has hit his physical limits.
"Puerto Rican shortstop Yahil Melendez (7) is a wiry, projectable left-handed hitter with good shape to the swing and some power from strong wrists. He should stay at shortstop and has a 55-60 arm to stay on the left side regardless. He hasn’t had any trouble getting to fastballs but he hasn’t faced much great pitching, especially with 2023 a down year for Puerto Rican draft talent."- Keith Law
Sahadev Sharma of The Athletic said that some within the organization compare him to current Cubs prospect Ezequiel Pagan “with the potential for a bit more pop.” Again, the Cubs have a great need for star power and just regular old slugging power and if they can get that from a 7th-round prep shortstop, we’ll take it.