CHICAGO -- Just a warning for all those Chicago Cubs prospects assigned to the Arizona Fall League on Wednesday, manager Dale Sveum plans on keeping an eye on you in person.
Outfielder Matt Szczur and shortstop Javier Baez were the highlights among the eight-player contingent the Cubs will send to play for the Mesa Solar Sox.
Also scheduled to play in the Arizona Fall League’s 20th season are infielder Rubi Silva and pitchers Dae-Eun Rhee, Kevin Rhoderick, Zach Rosscup, Nick Strunk and Tony Zych. Rhoderick will be a taxi squad member, which means he can only be activated on Wednesdays and Sundays.
Sveum, who makes his offseason home in Scottsdale, Ariz., said he has plans to take in some games.
“I’ll go; it’s not like I have anything else to do,” Sveum joked. “I think living there and being so close, you can go and watch a game and see the guys in your organization play and get a little more evaluation of them as well.”
Not on the Cubs’ list of players headed to the AFL is outfielder Jorge Soler, who has been impressive since joining the organization this summer. The Cuba native has batted .305 over his first 15 games at Single-A Peoria, following a short stint with Mesa in the Arizona Rookie League.
Not only do the Cubs want Soler to take it slow rather than play in the AFL, he will not play winter ball either.
“Jorge just hasn't played much baseball,” new farm director Brandon Hyde said. “He was in Arizona getting in shape and we're excited about the start he's had in Peoria. He just hasn't played much. We'd like to get him to instructional league and to get him five weeks to continue get his legs underneath him and just get into playing shape. He was just short on experience this last year and so we're excited about getting down there and getting with him every day. He's a special talent.”