11/13 AFL and winter league updates

* Albert Almora and Jorge Soler each drove in a run to help the Mesa Solar Sox beat Peoria, 8-1, on Tuesday in Arizona Fall League play. Kris Bryant also started, and went 1-for-4. It was the Solar Sox’s fourth straight win and they improved to 17-11-1 with two games to play. On Wednesday, the Solar Sox play host to Glendale at HoHoKam Stadium, and they wrap up the regular season Thursday at Glendale. The AFL championship game will be played Saturday at Scottsdale Stadium. The Surprise Saguaros have clinched the West Division. The Solar Sox have a slight edge in the East over the Salt River Rafters.

* Christian Villanueva went 3-for-4 with a double, a home run and one RBI in Obregon’s 7-4 win Tuesday over Mexicali in Mexican Winter League play.

* Junior Lake was 2-for-4 with one RBI in Estrellas de Oriente’s 3-2 loss Tuesday to Toros del Este in Dominican Winter League play. Lake was batting .314 in nine games.

— Carrie Muskat


***WARNING*** The following is a simple statement (although SOME may disagree, but then again…IT’S OK TO DISAGREE): I hope than one day Bryant becomes a “GREAT” hitter for the Cubs as he is not as of yet. Unless of course Hoyer says he is then it MUST be true. HA!

STOP YOUR MIND-MELT! Bryant, if lucky, will know nothing of any of us! when it matters. (I may want to retract that in the morning)

By next August, we should see Almora, Szczur & Soler in our outfield.

I don’t think Almora will be up next year, as he hasn’t played above A-ball yet. I would think the Cubs would start him at High-A Daytona this year and go from there. Mid-2015 at the absolute earliest is my best guess. It would surprise me if Soler is called up this year as well. Maybe as a September call-up when rosters expand, but I would guess the Cubs would want a full healthy season of him at AA before bumping him up to the Majors. Again, sometime in 2015 is more likely for him. As for Szczur, his stock has fallen a bit in the past year. Right now it’s hard to see him as anything more than a 4th outfielder in the Majors. I would think he’d start the year at AAA and see what happens.

Good points Doug. I was hoping Szczur would have progressed instead he regressed a little bit. Is it not nice however knowing there are quite a few options in the minors should one of the prospects fall off? I agree with your assessment regarding 2015 and Soler, 2015 may make more sense to “introduce” the majority of the youngsters AND start competing at the same time instead of rushing anybody in 2014. Do you think come 2015 the Cubs will THEN focus on some FA stud starting pitchers?

I think the Cubs will fill in their rotation as they see fit, as long as it makes financial sense as well as fits in with their plans. I’m sure they could spend $150 million on bidding and signing Masahiro Tanaka this offseason if they’d like. The question is, is it worth it to spend that much on a pitcher? Same goes for David Price. If the Cubs wanted to trade for him, they now have the prospects to make a deal. Question is, does giving up three or four of their top prospects make sense for them right now? (the answer to the first question is at this point probably not, the answer to the second question is no) As for next offseason, at the moment the list of potential FA starters include Clayton Kershaw, Jon Lester, Max Scherzer, Jake Peavy, Justin Masterson, and Homer Bailey with club options for Johnny Cueto and Yovani Gallardo and Hisashi Iwakuma. Now not all of those guys will reach free agency, and Clayton Kershaw could cost upwards of $200 million, but certainly there might be something else there that would fit in with the Cubs plans and budget. I’d keep an eye on Lester and Masterson, as they both have Theo-connections in their past.

Very nicely stated Doug. Also listing next years possible FA starters, that info is very much appreciated as well as the Theo connections.

Wondering if the AFL Championship contest will be televised by the MLB Network or some other entity.

If the Solar Sox make it Jhosk, I will be there. If not televised, I will be glad to fill in the blanks from the Box Score. If you want?

Yes, sir, would be much obliged if you would do that, Jasper.

Well jhosk, they must win today. If they do, I am there.🙂

Imagine no more losing
It’s easy if you try
Only Cardinals below us
Above us only sky
Imagine all the Cubs Fans
Living in that day…

Imagine there’s no haters
It isn’t hard to do
Nothing to bitch and moan for
And no politics too
Imagine all the Cubs fans
Living life in peace…

You may say I’m a dreamer
But I’m not the only one
I hope someday you’ll join us
And Wrigleyville will be as one

Imagine no disappointments
I wonder if you can
No need for boycotts
Or questions if we can
Imagine all the Cubs fans
Sharing all the world as one…

You may say I’m a dreamer
But I’m not the only one
I hope someday you’ll join us
And Cubs fans will finally live as one

Go Cubs! Srb1

A beautiful dream Steve! Thank you for writing such a lovely and hopeful poem! May YOU have a beautiful and peaceful day!

white, you ever hear of John Lennon? lol

I have sooo totally destroyed my privacy because of this. Thanks for the never ending pending status on mlb.com – – mlb.com!

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