MLB Pipeline’s Updated Cubs Top 20 Prospect List

With the promotion of Arismendy Alcantara to the big leagues, MLB Pipeline posted another update to the Cubs prospect list.

Kris Bryant, Javier Baez and Addison Russell remain the top three prospects in the system, for now. Albert Almora moved up to the fourth spot vacated by Alcantara with Jorge Soler rounding out the top five. Christian Villanueva was added to the list at No. 20, and not one of the pitching prospects that could have easily been inserted into the list.

Christian Villanueva began the season with Triple-A Iowa and struggled mightily at the plate. The slick fielding third baseman hit only .211/.283/.372 in 64 games with Iowa that included 18 doubles, six home runs and a .656 OPS.

PrintThe front office sent Villanueva back to Double-A Tennessee after Kris Bryant was promoted to Iowa. Villanueva has not hit in the Smokies lineup. In 47 games, Villanueva has put together a .247/.313/.388 slash line with 13 doubles and four home runs for a .701 OPS.

The 23-year old third baseman has not progressed at the plate the way the Cubs had hoped this season. Christian Villanueva has one minor league option left after this season, so there is a little more time for him to develop. But the clock is ticking.’s Top 20 Cubs Prospects
  1. Kris Bryant, 3B
  2. Javier Baez, INF
  3. Addison Russell, INF
  4. Albert Almora, OF
  5. Jorge Soler, OF
  6. C.J. Edwards, RHP
  7. Kyle Schwarber, OF/C
  8. Billy McKinney, OF
  9. Arodys Vizcaino. RHP
  10. Pierce Johnson, RHP
  11. Dan Vogelbach, 1B
  12. Victor Caratini, C
  13. Jeimer Candelario, 3B
  14. Eloy Jimenez, OF
  15. Jen-Ho Tseng, RHP
  16. Gleyber Torres, SS
  17. Paul Blackburn, RHP
  18. Kyle Hendricks, RHP
  19. Corey Black, RHP
  20. Christian Villanueva, 3B
MLB Pipeline 2014 Rankings of Cubs Prospects
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  • Theboardrider

    If Olt was to be in this list. Think he would be before or after McKinney? That’s where I’d place the over/under in him relative to this list. I’d say he’s probably right behind McKinney. But probably a lot would have him higher, maybe even top 5. With his power numbers, defense and then domination at AAA, I think he’s still project able as an well above average MLB 3rd baseman.

    • daverj

      I agree … I would put Olt at #9. I also still think he can turn into a .235-245 hitter with 25 HR. Though I don’t think the Cubs will move Bryant to the outfield unless and until Olt proves he can hit in the big leagues.

  • Mike Ogulnick

    I think it’s time for Daury Torrez to start getting some attention. He’s been outstanding for Kane County. He doesn’t belong among the top pitching prospects yet, but he’s had a great season.

  • Ripsnorter1

    I can’t believe that Christian Villanueva even made this list. If the system is so deep (and I think it has good depth), why post a 3B who cannot hit and was demoted? He’s looking more like Brett Jackson everyday.

    Take these lists with a shovel full of salt.

    • Sonate

      Agree with both you and Boardrider. Although Olt is also “a 3B who cannot hit and was demoted,” he certainly dominates Villanueva and has to be on this list instead of him.

      • Denver Mike

        Olt has lost rookie status due to ML games played so he isn’t eligible for this list. But I do agree he has more potential to succeed than Villanueva at this point.

    • texcubnut

      A common sense post, Rip. I agree with you about these lists. They are enjoyable to look at and discuss. That and a dollar will get you a cup of coffee.

  • Tom U

    I would not place Villanueva in the Top 20 at this time, and I would drop Vogelbach to twentieth on the list.

    I would replace Javier Baez and Kyle Hendricks ( on the list, not in their slot) with Daury Torrez and Jeffrey Baez.

    Among the players I would consider for Villanueva’s slot would be catchers Cael Brockmeyer and Justin Marra.

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