Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

A look at Cubs news and prospects playing in Winter Leagues

Anderson signing official, Cubs take Iowa two-way star, draft notes and winter league playoffs.

Cubs make Anderson signing official

The Cubs and left-handed pitcher Brett Anderson have agreed to terms on a one-year contract for the 2017 campaign. Reports have the deal at $3.5 million with incentives that could drive the contract to $10 million.  Anderson, who turns 29 on Feb. 1, is 38-43 with a 3.86 ERA (294 ER/685.2 IP) in 127 major league appearances, all but 12 as a starter, covering all or part of eight seasons with the Oakland Athletics (2009-13), Colorado Rockies (2014) and Los Angeles Dodgers (2015-16). He owns a 58.9 ground ball percentage in his career, the second-highest mark among active pitchers since the start of the 2009 campaign.

2016  Draft Class Update—Tyler Peyton RHP

A semi-finalist for the John Olerud Two-Way Player of the Year Award after his junior season at the University of Iowa, the Iowa native returned for his senior season after being selected in the 33rd round by the Reds. Iowa’s Friday night starter and first baseman, Peyton went 7-4 with a 3.03 ERA and slashed .337/.439/.417 with 31 RBI to earn All-American honors. As a senior, Peyton made 12 starts and posted a 4-5 mark with a 4.24 ERA while hitting .335/.412/.507 with 4 HR and 26 RBI. After the Cubs used their 29th round pick on the 22-year-old, Peyton rehabbed a sore shoulder in Mesa and didn’t make his pro debut although he did see time on the mound during fall instructs. Peyton will likely participate in extended spring training and could be a rotation candidate in Eugene to start short-season.

2017 Draft

After not having a pick until the third round last year, there’s plenty of buzz about the Cubs 2017 draft as they hold the 27th and 30th pick. At the Cubs Convention, Jason McLeod said the plan is to get as much pitching as possible as their strength lies in position players throughout the minors. It been discussed before, the Cubs chose to use their top 10 picks on Albert Almora, Kris Bryant, Kyle Schwarber and Ian Happ instead of arms. And it worked. The last two drafts the Cubs have hammered the college ranks seeking arms and all signs are pointing to collecting more pitchers in June. Since Theo Epstein took over, the Cubs have only inked 11 prep pitchers to contracts, eight of them remain in the organization but none have pitched past AA. LH Rob Zastryzny, the Cubs second-round pick in 2013, is the first and only pitcher drafted by Epstein regime to make it to the majors with the Cubs, debuting last season. While the homegrown pitching garden hasn’t been fruitful, the Cubs have used free agency and trades to compile one of the top pitching staffs in baseball. One trend I’ve seen the past few years with the pitching ranks is the top arms atop the draft rankings in January may not be the same ones drafted in June as no prospects seem to rise and fall dramatically more than pitchers, especially at the prep level. Injuries, drop in velocity and a variety of other factors move arms up and down the rankings like the thermometer on a 24-hour period in the desert. Baseball America has obtained the bonus slots for the 2017 draft and despite having the last pick, the Cubs have nearly $7.1 million in pool money after only having $2.2 million last year. Cubs get $2.2 million for the 27th pick and $2 million for the 30th pick. Cubs second round pick is worth $858,900. Here the reset of the slot money per pick 3rd round (105-$487,500), 4th round (135-$364,100); 5th round (165-$272,200), 6th round (195-$212,000); 7th round (225-$167,100); 8th round (255-$141,400); 9th round (285-$130,900); 10th round (315-$125,000). Cubs are 17th overall in pool money and get more cash to spend than the Giants ($6 million), Mets ($5.9), Dodgers ($5.5), Nationals ($5.2) and Cardinals ($3.9). 

Venezuelan Winter League

Zulia has clinched a berth in the Caribbean World Series. 

Dominican Winter League

Ronny Rodriguez smacked a solo homer in the bottom of the 10th to give Aguilas a 3-2 win over Licey and cut the best-for-nine series to 3-4. 2B Chesny Young (.308) went 1-for-4 in the win. 

Mexican Pacific Winter League

Mexicali took a 3-2 series lead with a 5-2 win over Los Mochis in the best-of-seven series.

Puerto Rican Winter League

Caguas has clinched a berth in the Caribbean World Series.

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