12/4 Scouting reports
Here’s more info from MLB.com’s Jonathan Mayo on the two Minor Leaguers the Cubs got from Oakland in Thursday’s deal.
Morla is a solid mid-range kind of prospect. His numbers in the Northwest League don’t look all that exciting, but what probably interested the Cubs is that he was throwing 93-94 mph with his fastball and maintaining it in his starts. He complements the fastball with a good slider. It’s the breaking ball that largely was the swing-and-miss pitch that allowed him to rack up over a strikeout per inning with Vancouver. At 21, he’s got a good pitcher’s body and is projectable. If a team put him in the bullpen exclusively, he could increase the fastball into the mid-90s.
Spencer is big and athletic, capable of playing the outfield as well as first base. He’s got an above-average arm. In fact, there was some talk about drafting him as a pitcher because he was 90+ in brief mound stints at Arizona State. He’s got plus raw power and became a much better overall hitter in 2009 by shortening his swing after getting promoted to Double-A. He can hit the ball out of any park and the OF-1B mix gives him a little versatility defensively. He drew a comparison to current Cub Micah Hoffpauir at similar stages of their careers.
— Carrie Muskat