Sunday, December 6, 2009

Cubs in Winter Ball Update

Dominican Winter League
Jake Fox, whom the Cubs traded to Oakland on Thursday, has been played for Licey in the DWL. So far he's hitting .296 in 7 games with 1 HR and 7 RBIs. Fox just joined Licey for the second half of their season.

Starlin Castro, the Cubs top prospect in the organization, has been struggling since joining the DWL. He started his winter playing for Mesa of the Arizona Fall league, but now he's joined Escogido in the Dominican now. So far in 8 games he's hitting .182 with 2 RBIs. In the AFL, he tore it up hitting .376 in 26 games.

Nelson Perez, a Class A Cub prospect has been playing with Toros all winter. Perez played with Peoria of the Midwest League during the regular season and hit .251 in 120 games. The outfielder has played in 26 DWL games so far, and has a batting average of .293 with 2 homers and 6 runs batted in. Perez is a left handed batter.

Here are the current Domician League standings:
1. Escogido: 23-15
2. Licey: 22-16, 1 GB
3. Toros: 21-17, 2 GB
4. Aguilas: 18-20, 5 GB
4. Gigantes: 18-20, 5 GB
6. Estrellas: 13-25, 10 GB

Mexican Pacific League
Many Cubs have played for Mexicali all season long. Jeff Samardzija started 5 games to get some work in before returning to Indiana. He had a 2.25 ERA and a record of 2-0.

Jeff Stevens recently joined the Mexicali bullpen. During the 2009 regular season, Stevens pitched in 11 games for the Chicago Cubs along with 42 at AAA, all in relief. He had a record of 1-3 with a 2.03 ERA at AAA Iowa and was 1-0 with a 7.11 ERA with the big league club. So far this winter, his ERA is high once again currently at 5.40 in his 7 games with Mexicali. He is 0-2 and has recorded 2 saves. Stevens came to the Cubs organization last offseason in the trade that sent Mark DeRosa to Cleveland.

Brian Schlitter has pitched in 18 games out of the Mexicali pen. He has a ERA of 3.79 in 18 games. During the regular season, he pitched with Tennessee posting a 4.38 ERA in 59 games. Schlitter came to the Cubs organization in 2008 in the deal that sent Scott Eyre to the Phillies.

Outfielder Matt Camp has been hitting well for Mexicali. He has a batting average of .337 in 47 games with 1 homer and 24 RBIs. During the regular season he hit .283 in 99 games at AAA Iowa and .298 in 14 games at AA. The Cubs are at-risk of losing Camp in the Rule 5 Draft because they chose not to protect him.

Brad Snyder also played for Mexicali. He may not return the Cubs next season because he is a minor league free agent.

Thomas Diamond, a pitcher that the Cubs recently picked up from Texas, is 2-0 with a microscopic ERA of 0.64 in 3 starts for Mexicali since joining their rotation when Samardzija departed.

James Adduci, an outfield prospect, is the lone Cub who has played in the Mexican Pacific League for for a team other than Mexicali. James has appeared in 13 games for Hermosillo. He's hitting .244 with 2 home runs and 6 RBIs. Adduci had a great regular season, hitting .300 in 131 games for Tennessee. Adduci came to the Cubs in a trade with the Marlins for Zach McCormick in September of 2006. He was a Southern League All Star this season.

MPL Current Standings:
1. Hermosillo: 9-4
2. Culiacan: 8-5, 1 GB
2. Navajoa: 8-5, 1 GB
4. Mochis: 7-6, 2 GB
5. Obregon: 6-7, 3 GB
6. Guasave: 5-8, 4 GB
6. Mexicali: 5-8, 4 GB
8. *Mazatlan: 4-9
*first half winner

Venezuelan Winter League
Cub short stop Andres Blanco has been playing infield for Magallanes of the Venezuelan Winter League for most of the winter. He has an average of .294 with 2 homers and 25 RBIs. In addition, Blanco has 14 steals. In 2009, he played 53 games with the Chicago Cubs and hit .252 with 12 RBI. Blanco will be in the infield mix in Spring Training, vying for a spot on the Opening Day roster.

Robinson Chirinos has been a teammate of Blanco's for Magallanes this winter. He is hitting .333 in 37 games. Chirinos, a catcher, spent most of 2009 in the Florida State League, He hit .300 for Daytona in 69 games.

J.R. Mathes pitched with Caracas earlier this off season. The AAA prospect went 1-2 with an ERA of 5.08 in 6 starts.

First baseman Blake Lalli has joined Caribes for the second half of their season. He is hitting .292 in 7 games so far with a home run and 4 RBIs. Lalli spent all of this past season with the Smokies of AA hitting .314 with 52 RBIs in 118 games. He is a left handed batter who was signed by the cubs as a non-drafted free agent in 2006.

Current VWL standings:
1. Magallanes: 31-16
2. Caracas: 30-16, 0.5 GB
3. Zulia: 26-22, 5.5 GB
4. Margarita: 25-23, 6.5 GB
5. LaGuaira: 23-25, 8.5 GB
6. Lara: 20-28, 11.5 GB
7. Aragua: 19-28, 12 GB
8. Caribes: 16-32, 15.5 GB

Don't forget to visit my Cubs Farm Updates Twitter for the latest from the Cubs in Winter Ball!
That's it for this week's winter ball reports, I'll have some rumors and more later!

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