The accolades keep rolling in for the Chicago Cubs’ impressive crop of minor league prospects. After an incredible first full season as a professional in 2014, Cubs third base prospect Kris Bryant has been named the top overall prospect in the game by Baseball America.
Bryant hit .325/.438/.661 with 43 homeruns and 34 doubles in 138 games last season. His time was split almost evenly between Double-A and Triple-A. Bryant is a very athletic player with big raw power and great contact skills. He hits the ball to all fields extremely well, and has all the signs of becoming an incredibly dangerous hitter for the Cubs for a very long time.
The list included scouting grades for each player. On a 20-80 scale, Bryant ranked as followed: Hit Tool-60, Power-80, Speed-50, Defense-50 and Arm-60.
The Cubs continued to have a strong influence on the Baseball America list, even after Bryant in the top spot. Shortstop Addison Russell was ranked third on the list, outfielder Jorge Soler 12th, catcher/outfielder Kyle Schwarber 19th, right-handed pitcher C.J. Edwards 38th and outfielder Billy McKinney 83rd. With so many highly ranked prospects, it is fair to expect Baseball America to name the Cubs as the top ranked organization.
Minnesota Twins outfielder Byron Buxton was ranked second by Baseball America, sandwiched in between Bryant and Russell. Houston Astros shortstop Carlos Correa and Los Angeles Dodgers shortstop Corey Seager rounded out the top five.
The Cubs are loaded with young talent not only in the minor leagues, but at the major league level as well. Bryant will almost surely join the likes of Anthony Rizzo, Starlin Castro, Soler, Javier Baez and Arismendy Alcantara in the major leagues early in the upcoming 2015 season. While a lot of this is based on potential, all of this young talent could easily make for an incredible core that could lead the Cubs to the promise land.