ESPN’s Keith Law has released his yearly preseason farm system rankings and your very own Chicago Cubs are Numero Uno with Kris Bryant and Addison Russell leading the charge. This should come as no surprise after the year the Cubs just had off the field in assembling what Law described as “ the strongest collection of top-shelf hitting prospects I can remember since I started working in baseball”.
Last July the Cubs traded Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel to Oakland for an excellent prospect in the shortstop Russell to pair with overall top prospect Kris Bryant. These two alone are what get Cubs fans giddy but add in other recent callups, Jorge Soler and Javy Baez, and young talents, Kyle Schwarber and Albert Almora and it’s plain to see that the Cub’s cupboard is stocked. Now obviously farm system rankings don’t translate into World Series wins and although loaded with hitting prospects they can’t all take the field at the same time. There will be moves made over the course of the next year that remove some redundancies and hopefully bring in Major League-ready pitching.
Year Four with Theo Epstein at the helm appears to be the year the Cubs will make a big leap back into contention and Cubs fans have Epstein’s baseball acumen and talent evaluation to thank.