Quickie Cubs 40-Man Preview

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Now that awards season is coming to a close (with the MVP awards still to be announced), we turn our attention to the Chicago Cubs’ 40-man roster, which stands at 31 now after free agent departures and recent claims and minor signings.  That leaves 9 spots to protect a good amount of prospects in the minors that I’m sure Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer would prefer not to lose.  Many of the Cubs’ prospects may still be too far away to be plucked up in the MLB portion of the Rule 5 since they’d have to stay on their new organization’s active roster the entire season, but the minor league phases could still see a few get poached.  The Cubs can, of course, open up more spots via trades and non-tenders coming up, but the deadline to protect coveted prospects is coming up soon:

All 30 teams have to declare which players will be added to their 40-man roster by 11:59 p.m. ET on Friday. Players left unprotected will be exposed to selection by the 29 other teams in the Rule 5 Draft in December at the Winter Meetings in Nashville, Tenn.

Similarly to what I wrote earlier, the Cubs may have to use all their available spots prior to inking those free agents:

Here’s a list of all 30 teams’ Top 30 prospects who needed to be protected to avoid being exposed to the Rule 5 Draft.

Chicago Cubs (6)
No. 7 Pierce Johnson, RHP
No. 10 Willson Contreras, C
No. 13 Dan Vogelbach, 1B
No. 19 Corey Black, RHP
No. 20 Jeimer Candelario, 3B
No. 29 Daury Torrez, RHP

And that doesn’t even take into account the Cubs wanting to draft their own Rule 5 guy (hello, next Hector Rondon?) from another organization, for which they need open spots.

I don’t expect all of these guys will be protected, and in fact, I think some of them might end up being traded to open up spots and get the Cubs new meat in the system.  But that’s a good starting point until we’re able to update the roster come Friday evening/Saturday morning.

UPDATE 3:50 PM: Here’s another one, so now Cubs only have 8 spots left.

Checking his stats, Leathersich seems to have really good strikeout rates with poor command.  Might as well give him a spot and see if the Cubs can sneak him through optional waivers.


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About Rice Cube

Rice Cube is the executive vice president of snark at World Series Dreaming. He loves all things Cubs, with notable exceptions (specifically, the part of Cubs fandom that pisses him off). Follow on Twitter at cubicsnarkonia

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