2016 Draft Class Update—Chad Hockin, RHP
College pitching was the theme for the 2016 draft as the Cubs tabbed 20 college arms. Sixth-round pick Chad Hockin saw his stock rise during the summer of 2015 in the Cape Cod League as the right-hander impressed scouts and evaluators with a fastball in the mid-90s and a wicked slider. The grandson of Hall of Famer Harmon Killebrew made two starts at Cal-State Fullerton during three seasons, but spent the majority of his time working out of the bullpen, logging 62.2 innings in 49 games. Ranked the 70th best prospect by MLB.com and 104 by Baseball America heading into the draft, Hockin missed time with an elbow issue during the season and was clocked in the low 90s when he returned. He fell to the Cubs with the 194th pick. After signing for the $241,000 slot amount, Hockin made his pro debut in the Eugene in mid-July. The 22-year-old appeared in 11 games for the Ems and logged 12 innings (0-0, 6.00 ERA, 14 H, 4 BB, 14 K, .298 BAA). His numbers were elevated based on three rough outings when he surrendered eight runs in three innings. He didn’t allow an earned run in the other eight outings. Hockin’s fastball was clocked in the low- to mid-90s and NWL hitters had trouble with his slider. The California native didn’t pitch in the playoffs and participated in fall instructs. It was the second straight year the Cubs drafted an arm from the Titans bullpen, taking left-handed reliever Tyler Peitzmeier in 2015. Hockin should be in the mix for a bullpen spot in South Bend to open 2017 and is a prospect to keep an eye on.
The Chicago Cubs announced on Tuesday the TV duo of Len Kasper and Jim Deshaies have had their contracts extended through the 2019 season. Kasper has been the Cubs play-by-play man since 2005 and Deshaies came a on board in 2013......The 32nd annual Cubs Convention will be held this weekend and the Cubs recently announced the line-up for the three-day event........Cubs are scheduled to visit the White House on Monday.
Venezuelan Winter League
Lara took advantage of three Margarita errors in the bottom of the eighth and scored four times to win Game 7 6-2.
Dominican Winter League
Escogido beat Aguilas 5-2 to improve to 4-8 and hand Aguilas (9-2) only their second loss in round-robin play. 3B Chesny Young went 3-for-5 with a run scored and a RBI in the win. Young is hitting .326 in round robin action. 1B Taylor Davis was 0-for-4 with a RBI. Gigantes (4-6) blanked Licey (5-6) as seven pitchers combined for the 7-0 win.
Mexican Pacific Winter League
The semi-finals begin Jan. 11 as Hermosillo faces Mexicali and Los Mochis takes on Culiacan.
Puerto Rican Winter League
Santurce punched their ticket to the finals with a 2-1 win over Carolina to take the series 4-1. Carolina’s 1B Yasiel Balaguert went 1-for-4 with a double.....Caguas scored a run in the top of the ninth and beat Mayaguez 2-1 to take a 3-2 series lead. RH Miguel Mejia got the win in relief, tossing 1.1 shutout frames. Mejia stranded an inherited runner in the seventh and then tossed a scoreless eighth. C Carlos Corporan was 0-for-3 in the loss.