Last year was the first draft for the Cubs new front office and after taking high school outfielder Albert Almora with the sixth pick overall, the next seven selections were all pitchers. Here’s a look at all 42 picks from last year’s draft class in reverse order and what they’ve done since last June.
40th Round, Pick # 1214—Jacob Rogers, 23, 1B, L/R, 6’5”, 195—Signed 6/16/12—The graduate of Mount Olive College hit .341/.442/.557 in 26 games in Mesa in his pro debut and was promoted to Class A Peoria in the Midwest League for the final three weeks of the season. In 16 games, he hit two homers, knocked in 16 runs and walked 19 times and had a OBP of .493. The 23-year-old stayed behind in Mesa for extended spring training and is expected to play at short-season Boise.
39th Round, Pick # 1184—Rustin Sveum, 19, 3B, S/R 6’0”. 175—Unsigned—The son of Cubs manager Dale Sveum was drafted as a third baseman but spent his freshman season at Dixie State Junior College in St. George, Utah, on the mound pitching relief. In nine games, the right-hander allowed one earned run in 10.2 innings with five strikeouts and two walks.
38th Round, Pick # 1154—Hassan Evans, 21, OF, R/R, 6’3”, 200—Unsigned—The 2012 Junior College All-American at Herkimer CC, New York, decided to attend Delaware State instead of turning pro. Evans started 36 games for Delaware State hitting .366/.441/.470 with 15 stolen bases.
37th Round, Pick # 1124—Clayton Crum, 21, P, R/R. 6/1”, 190—Unsigned—Crum went to Oregon University instead of signing with the Cubs. The right-hander spent one year at Howard College and attended the University of Texas as a freshman but didn’t play. This season for the Ducks, Crum pitched in seven games allowing 11 hits in 11.2 innings with a 5.40 ERA.
36th Round, Pick # 1094—Sly Edwards, 19, CF, R/R. 5’11”, 168—Unsigned—Turned down the Cubs offer and attended High Point University in North Carolina. The Miami Lakes Florida native made 15 starts for the Panthers (34 games) as a freshman hitting .190 with nine RBI and seven runs.
35th Round, Pick # 1064—Benjamin Carhart, 23, 3B, R/R 5’10”, 200—Signed 6/16/12—The graduate of Stetson University made his pro debut for Mesa hitting .353 in 35 games with a homer and 21 RBI. The right-handed hitting third baseman had 16 multi-hit games and a 12-game hitting streak. Carhart returned home to Florida, starting 2013 with Daytona in the Florida State League. The 23-year-old is hitting .274/.321/.370 with 14 doubles and is tied for fourth on the team with 26 RBI. Carhart is hitting .306 with runners in scoring position.
34th Round, Pick # 1034—Christian Botnick, 18, P, R/R, 6’3”, 195—Unsigned —A member of the Canadian National Junior team, Botnick didn’t sign with the Cubs and will enroll at Howard College in August. He decided to stay in Canada after the draft and play with the Ontario Blue Jays, an under 18 club team. He also helped Canada to a silver medal in the world under 18 championships in Korea in September.
33rd Round, Pick # 1004—Thomas Pannone, OF, 19, L/L, 6’0”, 180—Unsigned —Drafted an an outfielder, the Cranston, Rhode Island native played the outfield and tossed 52 innings for Southern Nevada Junior College this season instead of turning pro. He hit 274 in 41 games two homers and 13 RBI and 10 SB. He went 6-2 on the mound with 78 strikeouts and allowed 34 hits and 21 walks.
32nd Round, Pick # 974—Tim Saunders, 23, SS, R/R, 6’0”, 180—Signed 6/16/12—The former shortstop at Marietta College had great success in his first pro season hitting .493 at Mesa before being promoted to Peoria after 17 games. Saunders played 20 games at Peoria hitting .320 with 2 HR and 12 RBI. He finished the season at Daytona hitting .310 in 12 games. He stole 17 bases in his three stops. He continued to open eyes in spring training this year hitting a home run for Chicago, going 2-8 in six games. Saunders is off to a slow start in the Florida State League at Daytona hitting.191 in 42 games. He’s used his speed to swipe 17 bases and has played second base and centerfield for the Cubs.
31st Round, Pick # 944—Bryan Bonnell, 19, P, L/R, 6’5”, 190—Unsigned
The Nevada all-state P/1B stayed home and attended UNLV instead of signing with the Cubs. He hit .176 in 17 at-bats for the Rebels and also appeared in eight games on the mound going 0-1 with a 13.03 ERA.
30th Round, Pick # 914—Izaac Garsez, 23, OF, L/L, 6’1”, 210—Signed 6/16/12—A former NAIA All-American at the College of Idaho, the outfielder began his pro career in Mesa after turning pro. He played in 13 games in Arizona before returning home to play for Boise in the Northwest League. The left-hander hit .228 with the Hawks in 25 games. Garsez’s whereabouts this spring remain a mystery as his name in still on the Boise roster but there are no reports of him playing in any extended spring training games.
29th Round, Pick # 884—Austin Pentecost, 23, P, R/R, 6’2”, 195—Unsigned —The senior from Lewis-Clark State College decided not to pursue a professional baseball career after college as the deadline passed to sign with the Cubs.
28th Round, Pick # 854—Lance Rymel, 23, C, R/R, 6’0”, 195—Signed 6/16/12—Rymel was the everyday catcher for Rogers State College his senior year hitting .318 in 65 games with 3 HR and 40 RBI. After signing, he played 25 games at Boise batting .188 with 2 HR and 10 RBI. Rymel stayed behind at extended spring training but was recently promoted to AA Tennessee as the Cubs released two catchers in the system. He’s played in one game for the Smokies with a walk and a RBI single.
27th Round, Pick # 824—Tyler Bremer, 23, P, R/R, 6’2”, 210, —Signed —The right-hander from Baylor almost pitched the Bears to the College World Series last year and after signing with the Cubs made his pro debut on July 22 in the Arizona Rookie League. Bremer was promoted to Boise and finished his first pro season at 0-2 with a 5.71 ERA in 17.1 IP. Bremer stayed at extended spring training and should head to Boise when the season starts June 14. Here’s more on Bremer
26th Round, Pick # 794—Jasvir Rakkar, 22, P, R/R 6’2”, 200—Signed 7/03/12—A year ago, Rakkar and his Stony Brook teammates were making a memorable run to the College World Series. Now he’s in Mesa at extended spring training waiting for June 14 to roll around so he can began play at short-season Boise. After signing with the Cubs, he appeared in seven games in the Arizona Rookie League throwing 10 innings with 13 punchouts and a 2.70 ERA. Here’s more on Rakkar.
25th Round, Pick # 764—Rhett Wiseman, 18, OF, L/R 5’11, 187—Unsigned —The high school star from Massachusetts went to Vanderbilt instead of turning pro. He’s played in 52 games as a freshman (.299/.371/.453) and has started 10 games for the Commodores. He was the DH going 1-4 with a RBI in Vanderbilt’s NCAA Regional title win against Georgia Tech.
24th Round, Pick # 734—William Fisher, 19, C, L/R, 6’2”, 175—Unsigned —The Havana, Illinois native enrolled at Mississippi Valley State after hitting .303 as a freshman at Oakton Community College in Des Plaines. Fisher did not play for MVS in 2013.
23rd Round, Pick # 704—Jake Drossner, 18, P, R/L, 6’1”, 189—Unsigned —The left-hander from Richboro, Pennsylvania headed to the University of Maryland instead of signing with Chicago. He pitched in 13 games for the Terps making six starts with a 2-0 record and a 6.14 ERA. He fanned 23 in 36.2 IP and walked 19.
22nd Round, Pick # 674—Eduardo Orozco, 24, P, R/R, 6’2”, 195—Signed 6/18/12—Drafted out of University of California-Riverside, the right-hander made the most of his first pro season as he ended the year as Boise’s closer during their playoff run. Orozco is tied with the team lead at Kane County with 15 appearances and has gone 3-3 with a 4.58 ERA. He’s fanned 15 in 17.2 innings but walked 11. Here’s more on Orozco
21st Round, Pick # 644—Stephen Perakslis, 22, P, R/R, 6’1”, 185—Signed 6/16/12—Drafted out of the University of Maine, Perakslis pitched in 15 games at Mesa going 4-0 with a 3.20 ERA. He fanned 26 in 25.1 IP and walked six. He was promoted to Peoria the final week of the season allowing a run in one inning. He’s tied with Orozco with 15 appearances at Kane County tossing 29 IP with a 1-2 record and a 3.41 ERA. He had a tough start to 2013 allowing eight earned runs in his first five innings but has surrendered only three runs in his last 24 innings with a BAA of .196. Here’s more on Perakslis.
20th Round, Pick # 614—Blake Hickman, 19, C, R/R, 6’4”, 200—Unsigned —The Chicago native and graduate of Simeon High School took his talents to the University of Iowa instead of turning pro. He started 29 games for the Hawkeyes, hitting .220/.355/.264 with six RBI in 91 at-bats.
19th Round, Pick # 584—Damek Tomscha, 21, 3B, R/R 6’2”, 200—Unsigned —The highest Cub pick not to sign, the third baseman started 53 games for Auburn and hit .274/.384/.452 in the SEC with seven HR and 26 RBI. He committed 11 errors in 133 chances for the Tigers. The junior played last season at Iowa Western Community College.
18th Round, Pick # 554—David Bote, 20, IF, R/R, 5’11”, 185—Signed 6/25/12—The Neosho County CC product and former high school teammate of Cubs first-round pick Pierce Johnson played in 38 games in the Arizona Rookie League hitting .232/.349/.360. Bote started 2013 at Daytona going 2-14 in four games before being sent back to extended spring training. He joined Kane County on May 10 and is hitting (.167/.352/.214). Bote has a good eye at the plate and is playing short, second and third as well as the outfield in his utility role with the Cougars.
17th Round, Pick # 524—Nathan Dorris, 22, P, L/L, 6’3”, 185—Signed 6/16/12—Drafted out of Southern Illinois University, Dorris pitched well in both is stops in 2012. He tossed 10 innings at Mesa going 1-0 with a 1.80 ERA and then pitched in nine games at short-season Boise fanning 13 in 14 innings with a 1.93 ERA. The left-hander has been Kane County’s most reliable reliever appearing in 14 games with three saves and a 2.52 ERA. Dorris is averaging a strikeout per inning and has a WHIP of 1.16 while left-handers are 1-22 against him. He was named to the Midwest League All-Star team. Here’s more on Dorris.
16th Round, Pick # 494—Michael Hamaan, 22, P, R/R, 6’3”, 165—Signed 6/18/12—The right-hander from the University of Toledo, made his pro debut in the Arizona Rookie League in late July and spent the rest of 2012 at Boise pitching in seven games for the Hawks. He threw 10.2 innings with six strikeouts and a 5.91 ERA. He stayed behind this spring and has been logging innings at extended spring training. Haaman is expected to play for Boise when their season starts. Here’s more on Hamann
15th Round, Pick # 464—Carlos Escobar, 22, C, R/R, 6’2”, 185—Signed 6/16/12—One of three catchers signed in 2012, Escobar attended the University of Nevada and spent last season catching 27 games between Mesa and Boise. He hit .234/.358/.390 with one homer and 12 RBI. An injury delayed the start of 2013 and the backstop joined Kane County on May 10. He’s played in just seven games going 6-26.
14th Round, Pick # 434—Corbin Hoffner, 19, P, R/R, 6’5”, 235—Signed 6/16/12—The big right-hander was taken after playing his freshman year at St. Petersburg College in Florida and pitched in seven games last year in the Arizona Rookie League. He logged 12.1 innings allowing 15 hits and four walks but fanned 13 and had a ERA of 0.71. Like the rest of the young arms drafted last year, Hoffner stayed at extended spring training and is likely to be added to the Boise roster. Here’s more on Hoffner
13th Round, Pick # 404—Bijan Rademacher, 21, OF, L/L, 6’0”, 200—Signed 6/24/12—An outfield and reliever at Orange Coast College, Rademacher has showed his ability to hit since joining the Cubs. After turning pro, he played in three games in Mesa before heading to Boise where he hit .396 in 14 games. He was then promoted to low A Peoria where he cooled off hitting .221 in 122 at-bats. The left-hander is off to great start in his return to the Midwest League hitting .320/396/.383 in 41 games this season while playing a steady right field. He’s also appeared in three emergency relief stints and has yet to allow an earned run, leading the Cougars with a 0.00 ERA. Rademacher was named to the Midwest League All-Star game.
12th Round, Pick # 374—Justin Amlung, 23, P, R/R, 6’1”, 185—Signed 7/3/12—The Big East Pitcher of the Year out of Louisville signed with the North Siders and pitched in 2012 at Mesa and Boise, tossing 18 innings in his first pro season. The right-hander is working out of the bullpen for Kane County after starting six games at Boise. He’s appeared in 13 games in the MWL throwing 31.2 innings with a 5.12 ERA. Amlung has 25 strikeouts but has walked 15. Here’s more on Amlung
11th Round, Pick # 344—Rashad Crawford, 19, OF, S/R, 6’3”, 185—Signed 6/16/12—The high school product out of Mundy’s Mill High School in Clayton, Georgia, got 30 at-bats at Mesa after signing last year. The switch hitter has gone to strictly hitting left-handed this spring and is likely to stay in Mesa and play in the Arizona Rookie League as he is struggling at the plate.
10th Round, Pick # 314—Chad Martin, 23, P, R/R, 6’7”, 230—Signed 6/18/12—Selected after his senior season at the University of Indiana, Martin is a big power arm that pitched in 14 games for Mesa. He went 4-2 with a 5.06 ERA and fanned 17 in 17 innings. Martin hasn’t missed many bats in early extended spring training games but has pitched well lately. Martin should be on the Boise roster when games start. Here’s more on Martin
9th Round, Pick # 284—Chadd Krist, 23, C, R/R, 5’11”, 190—Signed 6/16/12—Ranked by Baseball America as the Cubs best defensive catcher in the minors, Krist is making sure his bat gets noticed. He hit .274/.335/.433 in his first pro year with stops in Mesa and Peoria. The University of California product started this season at Kane County hitting .263 in 12 games. He was promoted to Daytona on May 9 and has appeared in 20 games hitting .261 with a OPB of .378. He threw out 31 percent of runners in the MWL and has nabbed 22 percent in Daytona.
8th Round, Pick # 254—Michael Heesch, 23, P, R/L, 6’5”, 245—Signed 6/16/12—Heesch was selected by his hometown team after pitching for the University of South Carolina-Beaufort. The left-hander with excellent control appeared in two games for Mesa before being promoted to Boise, pitching in 12 games, all in relief. He fanned 22 in 25.2 innings and walked just on. This season, Heesch has earned a starting role at Kane County leads the Cougars in IP with 54 in 10 games. He’s pitched into the sixth inning in seven of his starts and is 2-4 with a 4.00 ERA. He has 35 strikeouts and walked 13. His best outing of the season came on May 5 as he blanked Dayton for 7.1 innings with four hits, no walks and five punchouts. Here’s more on Heesch
7th Round, Pick # 224—Stephen Bruno, 22, IF, R/R, 5’9”, 165—Signed 6/16/12—After the Cubs took Almora with their first pick, Bruno was the first bat the Cubs selected breaking a streak of seven pitchers. Bruno is a hitting machine. The University for Virginia product made his pro debut in the Northwest League for Boise last year, leading the league with a .361 average. He had 19 doubles and scored 51 runs in 67 games and had a OBP of .442. Bruno skipped low A and started 2013 at Daytona. The right-handed second baseman was hitting .362/.436/.478 in 19 games before an injury put him on the disabled list. He is expected to return soon and is currently rehabbing in Mesa.
6th Round, Pick # 194—Trey Lang, 21, P, R/R, 6’3”, 225—Signed 7/3/12—A newcomer to the mound, the Cubs selected the hard throwing right-hander out of Gateway Community College in Phoenix. Lang started concentrating on pitching in his year at Gateway and it earned him a pro contract. With a fastball in the mid to upper 90s, Lang appeared in seven games for Mesa in the Arizona Rookie League totaling 13.2 innings with a 3.29 ERA. He fanned 11 and walked two. The young arm stayed at extended spring training and may be in Boise’s starting rotation when the season begins. Here’s more on Lang
5th Round, Pick # 164—Anthony Prieto, 19, P, L/L, 5’11”, 170—Signed 6/18/12
One of the few teams to scout the left-hander from American High School in El Paso Texas, the Cubs convinced Prieto to turn pro instead of heading to Howard Junior College. He threw 19.1 innings in 10 games, making seven starts. He went 0-1 with a 2.33 ERA but walked 12 with 11 strikeouts and a BAA of .145. Prieto stayed at extended spring training in Mesa and may start with Boise but is more likely to accumulate innings in the Arizona Rookie League and work on his control. Here’s more on Prieto
4th Round, Pick # 134—Joshua Conway, 22, P, R/R, 6’1”, 175—Signed 6/16/12—Conway would have been a late-first, second round pick but an arm injury that required Tommy John surgery allowed the Cubs to take the right-hander in the fourth round out of Costal Carolina University. Conway missed all of the 2012 season and was back on the mound this spring. Conway was having a great spring but suffered another arm injury after slipping on a wet mound and will miss 2013. Here’s more on Conway
3rd Round, Pick # 101—Ryan McNeil, 19, P, R/R, 6’3”, 210—Signed 7/3/12—Instead of joining his brother at Long Beach State, McNeil signed a pro contract after his senior season at Nipomo High School in California. The right-hander had success in his first pro season going 1-0 with a 1.35 ERA in 20 IP. He yielded 19 hits and 10 walks with 18 punchouts. McNeil was injured at extended spring training, had surgery, and is expected to miss the season. Here’s more on McNeil
2nd Round, Pick # 67—Duane Underwood, 18, P, R/R, 6’2”, 205—Signed 7/12/12—Underwood was on his way to the University of Georgia before signing with the Cubs. The Pope High School graduate only pitched in five games working 8.2 innings allowing seven hits and six walks. The hard-throwing right-hander has done well this spring and will likely be in the Boise starting rotation. Here’s more on Underwood
1st Round, CA, Pick # 56—Paul Blackburn, 19, P, R/R, 6”2”, 185—Signed 6/16/12—Drafted out of Heritage High School in Brentwood California, the Cubs used their second sandwich pick on the high school arm. He signed shortly after the draft and threw 20.2 innings for Mesa going 2-0 with a 3.38 ERA. Blackburn is one of the top pitchers at extended spring training and is expected to head to Boise as a member of the starting rotation. Here’s more on Blackburn
1st Round, CA, Pick # 43—Pierce Johnson, 22, P, R/R, 6’3”, 170—Signed 6/19/12—If not for an arm injury to start his junior season at Southwest Missouri State, Johnson may not have been around when the Cubs made their pick. After making two appearances in Mesa after signing, he started four games for Boise in the Northwest League and also pitched in two playoff games. He finished his first pro season throwing 11 regular season innings with 14 strikeouts and three walks. Johnson is showing why he’s considered one of the Cubs top pitching prospects making 10 starts for Kane County in the Midwest League going 3-4 with a 2.89 ERA. The right-hander has fanned 60 in 53 IP with 15 BB and 52 hits. He tossed six shutout innings with nine strikeouts against Cedar Rapids on May 18. Here’s more on Johnson.
1st Round, Pick # 6—Albert Almora, 19, OF, R/R, 6’2”, 180—Signed 7/11/12—The top pick has lived up to the billing hitting a homer in his first game as a pro and was recently named Midwest League Player of the Week after six games. Drafted out of Mater Academy Charter High School in Hialeah Gardens, Florida, Almora was a member of Team USA Baseball and named 2011 USA Baseball's Athlete of the Year after helping the 18-and-under squad go 9-0 and earn the gold medal in the Pan-Am Games. After signing, Almora made his pro debut on July 23 blasting a homer. He played in 18 games at Mesa (.347/363/480) with 18 runs and five stolen bases. He was promoted to Boise appearing in 15 games (.292/.292/.446) with a homer and six RBI. This spring he broke his hamate bone swinging a bat on March 14 and had surgery on his hand the next day and started rehabbing in Mesa. Almora made his full-season debut on May 23 at Kane County and in 11 games is hitting .455/.510/.591 and has displayed his defensive skills in centerfield.