Cubs promote top prospect Davis to Iowa
The Cubs made a small but significant step toward the future Monday by promoting their top prospect, outfielder Brennen Davis, to Triple A Iowa.
Davis, 21, is expected to join the Iowa Cubs on Tuesday for the start of a series in Omaha. The minor-league season was extended this year, because it started late due to COVID protocols in spring training. So Iowa has 16 games remaining and will end its season on the same day as the big-league Cubs, Oct. 3.
"It's awesome," Davis told the Des Moines Register. "It's going to be a great experience. I'm excited to have a few more weeks of the season, because Double A would be ending in a week, so it's going to be nice to get more at-bats and experience at that level."
Davis' performance will determine his path, but with this move, the Cubs appear open to the idea of Davis making his major-league debut sometime in 2022.
The 6-foot-4 Arizona native was the Cubs' second-round draft pick in 2018. He started this season with eight games in South Bend, then was quickly promoted to Double A Tennessee, where he hit .252 with 13 home runs and 36 RBI.
Davis hit a pair of home runs and was named MVP of the MLB Futures Game in Denver. July was his best month in Tennessee, hitting .301 with 7 home runs.
In August, Davis was ranked the No. 14 best prospect by mlbpipeline.com, rising from No. 61 at the start of the season.
The Cubs improved their minor-league system with the flurry of trades at the deadline, but most of their top prospects are teenagers with a long ladder to climb. There is some good news on the farm, though. Here are some highlights:
OF Nelson Velazquez
Not listed among the Cubs top prospects before the season, he was named the organization's minor league position player of the month in August. He's hit .282 with 7 home runs in 30 games with Tennessee, after starting the season in South Bend. The Puerto Rico native was a fifth-round pick in 2017.
LHP Jordan Wicks
The Cubs' 2021 first-round pick isn't expected to see a heavy workload, but he's made two brief appearances for South Bend and has yet to allow a run or hit.
SS Ed Howard
The Chicago native, chosen in the 2020 first round, had a tough path. He didn't play much organized baseball last year due to the pandemic. In a normal summer, he would have had his senior season at Mt. Carmel High School and a couple months of rookie league. So it was understandable when Howard got off to a slow start at Low A Myrtle Beach. On the morning of Aug. 22, he was hitting .188, but over the next 13 games, he went 17-for-45 at the plate (. 377) with 4 doubles and 2 home runs.
OF Owen Caissie
After hitting .349 in the Arizona rookie league, the Cubs promoted the left-handed hitting Caissie to Myrtle Beach. The 19-year-old Canada native was one of four prospects acquired in the Yu Darvish trade from San Diego.
2B James Triantos
The Cubs' second-round draft pick this year is off to a good start at the Arizona rookie league, hitting .279 with 3 home runs in his first 21 games. Triantos, 18, graduated from high school in Virginia a couple months ago.
OF Alexander Canario
Acquired from the Giants in the Kris Bryant trade, Canario has shown some power, with 8 home runs in his first 36 games for South Bend.