For all the position player prospects the Cubs have turned out, they have yet to develop an impact pitcher. To wit, all five of the team’s most recent first-round picks are on the MLB roster, yet Rob Zastryzny became the first arm drafted by this front office to reach the majors when he debuted last season.
Rob Z’s a good dude, but not necessarily someone who moves the needle. And the same can be said for nearly every other pitcher matriculating through the system. Except for Dylan Cease. When I shared Jeff Passan’s hypothetical trade proposal for Gerrit Cole, more people objected to Cease’s inclusion than to the idea of parting with Eloy Jimenez and Ian Happ.
Cease was on the mound in South Bend tonight and started out in familiar fashion against the Lansing Lugnuts. The fireballing righty struck out the side in the 1st, then experienced some control issues in the following frame. A walk and a single put two men on before a wild pitch and another single brought a run home. A steal of home added another tally.
Cease then induced a grounder and headed to cover third when…
Okay, so that’s not good. The fact that he tested it out, however, tells me that it’s probably just a tweak. While he has finally been unleashed following his recovery from Tommy John surgery, the Cubs are still going to take it easy with Cease in general. Not only is he a prized prospect, but there’s really no reason to push anything in a low-A game in May.
Cease twisted his ankle covering third, he is out of the game, most likely as a precaution
— Todd ⚾️🐻🦌 (@CubsCentral08) May 18, 2017
We’ll keep an eye on the situation, though I don’t expect it to turn into anything big.