With Baseball America releasing their Cubs top 10 prospect list, I wanted to write something to celebrate the occasion. A straight analysis of the list wouldn’t have been particularly fun, so I decided to get creative with this one. Instead of comparing four of the top players in the system to other big league players, I decided to compare them to rap songs. More specifically rap songs off of El-P and Killer Mike’s spectacular album, Run the Jewels.
You can stream and download the entire Run the Jewels album for free here.
Javier Baez-Job Well Done
“Every word murderful
Surgical, painful, purposeful”
An already elite prospect, Baez burst on to the scene with one of the top season in all of minor league baseball. His 2013 season showed off his absurd power while hitting for a higher average than anyone thought he could. Baez is the king of this system. Every time he steps up to the plate is another chance for him to show off his explosive talent and he has the potential to become one of the most exciting players to watch in the game.
The crown jewel of a stacked system, Baez is an elite impact talent who deserves nothing else but a top flight song. Job Well Done is just that. Killer Mike’s hard hitting open to the track is the perfect compliment for the controlled violence that is Baez power tool. Job Well Done is tied together by a melodic Until the Ribbon Breaks chorus that unites Killer Mike and El-P’s verses like Javy’s bat speed is linked by his awe inspiring raw power.
Just like Killer Mike and El-P are on top of their game in the track, Baez is the top prospect in the Cubs game. This is an elite level song for an elite prospect. A game changer on both the production and the rapping sides, Job Well Done was one of the best rap songs of the year and couples up perfectly with Baez top prospect status.
You might be wondering why Baez isn’t Banana Clipper if he is the best in the system. Well, I considered that, but I just couldn’t go there. Baez has flaws, Banana Clipper does not. But fear not, everything is still ok. If Banana Clip would represent a Mike Trout level player, Job Well Done would be Joey Votto.
Kris Bryant-36″ Chain
“Me El, we hail
Like a young Che Guevara and Fidel
Castro, cash flow, car full of females”
The Cubs top selection in the 2013 draft, Kris Bryant burst on to the scene by mashing his way through the lower minors with a sense of swagger that rivaled the very best power prospects in the game. Then, to strut his stuff even more, Bryant dominated the Arizona Fall League and won the leagues MVP award.
That’s what 36″ Chain is all about. It’s about dominance. Like Mike and El, Bryant is the guy in charge. When he steps on the field he is the guy in charge. While 36″ Inch Chain is the duo’s way of establishing dominance over lesser rappers who need to show off their wealth with absurd gestures like massive chains. They don’t need a giant chain to show off their swag. That is what Kris Bryant is all about.
Kris Bryant is dominance. He doesn’t care about your flashy hundred mile an hour fastball or you breaking ball that drops to the floor because he is still better than you. He laughs at your pathetic attempt to show him up, because deep down you know that he is better than you
Jorge Soler-Sea Legs
“But I been out on them choppy waves and it’s hard to say where this land begins and that water stops”
The pricey Cuban import really didn’t have much of a season at all. Sadly he was kept to about 250 plate appearances on the year thanks to a pesky stress fracture in his shin. It was a lost campaign for the toolsy outfielder but this shouldn’t be considered the end of him by any means, he is still young and has plenty of time to reach his
Even after a lost year, Soler still has earned one of Run the Jewels best songs. Sea Legs is a tale of Mike and Jamie hitting their lowest lowest and making it out of the sea to tell the story and make it back up to the top.
Yeah Soler had a lost year, but that is ok for a player like him. 2013 was Soler’s time out on the choppy seas, but like Mike and EL, Soler has sea legs. He will make it out of the ocean and he will re-assert himself at the top of prospect lists across the game.
C.J. Edwards-A Christmas Fucking Miracle
“They can never take the energy inside you were born with
Knowing that, understand you could never be poor
You already won the war, you were born rich”
A relative newcomer to the Cubs system, the undersized 48th round pick is not your typical top pitching prospect, but he more than makes it work. In his six games with the Cubs organization Edwards absolutely shoved.
A Christmas Fucking Miracle is about staying true to yourself and holding on to what you believe in. It’s a song about doing your thing and not giving in to the critics that want you to give up or conform to them.
This is how a player like CJ Edwards made it. Coming up as a 48th and weighing in less than me Edwards had to prove himself in every single start. He didn’t have the pedigree where he would just get a free pass for any mistakes, people were going to scrutinize him for it, but like Run the Jewels, he stepped up.