Results tagged ‘ Futures Game ’
Jorge Soler will represent the World Team in the Futures Game. (Photo by Stephen Green)
A pair of the Cubs’ most promising prospects were honored for their solid first halves on Wednesday, as middle-infielder Arismendy Alcantara and corner outfielder Jorge Soler were both selected to represent the World Team in the MLB All-Star Futures Game. The annual exhibition, which will be held on July 14 at Citi Field in New York, pits the top U.S.-born prospects against the best from around the world.
The 21-year-old Alcantara has enjoyed a solid season in Double-A Tennessee this year. Primarily playing shortstop (57 appearances vs. 17 at second base), the 2008 non-drafted free agent has hit .280/.357/.465 and is fourth in the Southern League with 10 home runs and fifth in stolen bases with 19. He’s also tied for sixth in the SL with 17 doubles. The Dominican native is ranked No. 20 on MLB.com’s organizational prospect ranks.
Cuban expat Soler made news last season when the Cubs signed him to a nine-year, $30 million deal, and he has performed well in his first full season of minor league ball. The 6-foot-4, 215 pound slugger has hit .281/.343/.467 for High-A Daytona, recording eight home runs with 13 doubles and 35 RBI. Baseball Prospectus’ Jason Parks recently named Soler the No. 31 prospect in baseball, and MLB.com has him ranked No. 3 in the organization.
In addition to Alcantara and Soler, Cubs fans have a chance to vote for shortstop phenom Javier Baez as the final member of the World Team, as he was named a Futures Finalist.
Matt Szczur, pictured with the Short-Season Class-A Boise Hawks, has climbed a couple levels in just one year. Post by Austin Hannon. (Photo courtesy Boise Hawks)
Some players just find a way to separate themselves both on and off the field.
In May 2010, Matt Szczur (pronounced Cesar) donated stem cells to help save an 18-month-old girl that he had never met. One year later, he finds himself ranked as one of Baseball America’s midseason top 50 prospects.
On July 10, a day after being promoted to Class-A Advanced Daytona, the rising center fielder participated in the XM Futures Game, a display of each franchise’s elite prospects. ESPN’s Pedro Gomez performed an in-game dugout interview that touched upon Szczur’s decision to choose baseball over his gridiron skills he flashed at Villanova.
“To be honest, I thought I would miss it,” Szczur said, about his decision to leave football for baseball. “I realized in spring training, football wasn’t for me. I was excited I chose baseball.” (more…)