Who’s Hot, Who’s Not — Cubs MiLB Edition

Now that the Minor League season has a week and a half under its belt, it’s a good time to look at who’s hot and who’s not from the Cubs’ Affiliates (minimum of 25 AB’s for hitters and 5 IP for pitchers). Please bear in mind that it’s still too early to draw real conclusions from the numbers at this point, but we’re starting to see a few trends emerge.

Who’s Hot


Willson Contreras (C): .429/.474/.543 – started the year scorching hot with 4 extra-base hits, 2 walks, and only 3 Ks.

Daniel Vogelbach (1B): .412/.487/.588 – leads Iowa in RBI (11) and total bases (20) and has 1 HR and 3 doubles in 34 AB’s

Ryan Kalish (OF): .346/.485/.538 – 2nd on the team in walks with 6 and has only 4 Ks; kind of a non-factor in the big league picture, but a good depth guy as a 5th OF

Armando Rivero (RHP): 5.1 IP, 1.69 ERA – Rivero has given up just 1 run on 4 hits (1 HR) with zero walks and 5 Ks; his WHIP is at 0.75

Felix Pena (RHP): 5 IP, 1.80 ERA – Pena has had a great start, striking out 7 over his 5 innings, while only issuing 1 walk and giving up just 3 hits (1 HR)


Bijan Rademacher (OF): .444/.595/.704 – more like Rademasher, amirite; leads Smokies with 7 RBI and 2 HRs, with 9 walks and just 2 Ks; also OPSing 1.298; super small sample size (SSSS), but outstanding for the 24yo

Gerardo Concepcion (LHP): 7 IP, 0.00 ERA – yes, this guy is still in the Cubs system and he has started out the year pretty hot, with just 1 hit, 1 walk and an HBP and 5 K’s (0.29 WHIP); still some hope yet for this guy who the Cubs signed out of Cubs for a big chunk of change ($6 million)

Paul Blackburn (RHP) 18 IP, 0.50 ERA -allowed just 1 run on 11 hits and 1 walk with 10 K’s in 3 starts; highly thought of and is a guy to watch all season

Myrtle Beach

Jason Volser (SS): .325/.426/.475 – leads Pelicans in OBP (6 BB’s), 5 of his 13 hits are for extra bases

Rashad Crawford (OF): .333/.404/.595 – team leader in slugging (.595), has 7 extra base hits (1 HR, 2 triples, and 4 doubles)

Ryan McNeil (RHP): 8 IP, 2.25 ERA – several pitchers have started well for the Pelicans, but I chose McNeil because of his 10:1 K to BB ratio; oft-injured, but was somewhat healthy last year and started off well this year

South Bend

Donnie Dewees (OF): .405/.460/.690 – 2nd for entire Cubs MiLB in slugging (.690) and leads in total bases (29)l; 4 doubles and 4 triples with 7 RBI, 3 stolen bases and 5 BB’s.

Greyfer Eregua (RHP): 8 IP, 1.13 ERA – relatively unknown, had to do some digging on this guy; signed as a FA in 2012 and has been brought along slowly (2 years in summer leagues and 2 years in Rookie ball); 22yo has had a great start with only 3 hits given up and no walks with 6 Ks (0.38 WHIP)


Who’s Not


John Andreoli (OF): .206/.357/.294 – 7 for 34 with 14 K’s and 2 extra base hits; leads team in walks (8) and stolen bases (4), hopefully the bat heats up here soon

Drew Rucinski (RHP): 10.1 IP, 8.71 ERA – has given up 10 runs on 10 hits in just over 10 innings with 5 walks and 10 K’s; signed as a free agent in November and is 27 years old, so is just a depth piece, but still bumpy


Carlos Penalver (SS): .211/.250/.237 – considered a glove first guy anyway, but the bat is looking non-existent at this point; only 8 his (7 singles, 1 double) with 2 walks and 6 Ks in 35 AB’s

Michael Jensen (RHP): 6.1 IP, 7.11 ERA – has given up 6 runs (5 earned) on 6 hits and 5 walks (1.74 WHIP) with 2 K’s and 1 HR allowed

Myrtle Beach

Gleyber Torres (SS): .119/.275/.190 – arguably the best prospect in the Cubs system has only 5 hits and 16 K’s in 42 AB’s but leads the team with 9 walks

Trevor Clifton (RHP) 7.2 IP, 5.87 ERA – really beating himself with team-leading 7 walks; has given up 7 runs (5 earned) on 7 hits (1 HR)

South Bend

Matt Rose (1B): .094/.167/.094 – last year’s 11th round pick has started just 3-32 with 3 singles, 3 walks and 5 K’s

Justin Steele (LHP): 5.2 IP, 12.71 ERA – appears that he has been on the receiving end of some less than stellar defense, but has given up 12 runs (8 earned) on 13 hits and 5 walks (3.18 WHIP!) in 2 starts; struck out 6 and hit a batter too


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