The Cubs lost five players and took two in this year’s Rule 5 draft. Gone are the following:
- Lincoln Holdzkom – he’s the most likely to make an immediate impact with the team (Houston) that drafted him. Holdzkom was a highly-touted Marlins prospect that was acquired last year for Todd Wellemeyer. He pitched well for West Tenn but he does have some baggage – he had TJ surgery the previous year and he’s had some issues getting along with managers – he was kicked off his Arizona Western college baseball team for insubordination. That notwithstanding, I’m surprised that Hendry protected Adam Harben and not Holdzkom;
- Richard Lewis – We got Lewis as part of the Juan Cruz trade with Atlanta; Richard was a dud for two straight years at West Tenn, after having posted decent numbers at Iowa. I’m surprised that anybody wanted him in Rule 5 but apparently the Royals couldn’t do without him;
- Ed Campusano – this is the loss that bothers me; Campusano has been a serviceable lefthander who has been quietly working his way through the Cubs’ minor league system. Campusano was immediately traded by the Brewers to the Tigers, where he has decent chances of making it. Ed had a 1.75 ERA in 25 IP for the Diamond Jaxx this year; he struck out 34 while walking 8. Quite frankly, I’m at a loss as to why Hendry protected C Jose Reyes and let this guy go;
- Jason Smith – I didn’t even know we had this guy, evidently he is the Jason Smith that Colorado had at the Sky Sox. Apparently Smith was drafted in the 23rd round by the Cubs in the 1996 draft. Somehow we musta gotten him back, and
- Andy Shipman – Andy put together excellent numbers at West Tenn and respectable numbers at Iowa and was selected by the A’s. This was a situation where you can’t protect everybody.
- Josh Hamilton – selected #1 overall by the Devil Rays in 1999, Josh was expected to be a premier lefthanded hitter in the Bigs. Injuries sustained in an auto wreck and issues with cocaine have really hampered his rise to the majors. Hamilton was doing some work as a tree pruner when he got the call informing him that the Cubs had drafted him and then passed him along to Cincinnati in a prearranged deal, and
- James Henderson – this guy must be a real sleeper because he was drafted in the AAA phase of the draft, having only pitched in 28 games for the Nats’ farm system. He has a career 2-3 record and a 4.40 ERA, it’s likely he’ll be traded as well.
Here are the guys the Cubs drafted:
The net/net: We took some losses but it could have been worse. I’m surprised that nobody took a chance on Mike Fontenot or Chris Robinson…Washington lost seven players from their AA roster. Campusano and Shipman must be retained on their new major league rosters all year or they must be returned to the Cubs.
In other news, Baltimore sent pitcher Kevin Hart to the Cubs as the PTBNL in the Freddie Bynum trade. Although Rotoworld does not project Hart to be a potential major leaguer, it makes sense because it got “Brick Hands” Bynum off our 25 man roster and who knows how the young pitcher might pan out?