Prospect Power Rankings: Vol. 8

The eighth installment in our 2009 Prospect Power Rankings, these rankings are compiled and updated on a weekly basis throughout the season and are based solely on player performances, not age.

Statistics updated through the morning of June 15.


1. Jake Fox: INF/OF, Iowa (Class AAA)
Stats: .409 AVG, 17 HR, 53 RBI, 1.336 OPS

He is back in the minor leagues after a brief rendezvous in Chicago, in which he batted .417 (5-for-12) there. Even after over two weeks gone from Iowa, he still leads the Cubs' system in average, home runs, and RBI by a comfortable margin.

2. Josh Vitters: 3B, Peoria (Class-A)
Stats: .327 AVG, 13 HR, 38 RBI, .932 OPS

After a red-hot May, he has come back down a bit in June but trails only Fox in home runs and is third in the system in RBI. He is now three points shy of the team lead in average. He was a unanimous Midwest League all-star.

3. Robinson Chirinos: C, Daytona (Class High-A)
Stats: .333 AVG, 10 HR, 32 RBI, 1.112 OPS

He makes his first appearance in our top five after going on a recent tear. He may soon have the third most home runs in the system after clubbing all 10 of his round-trippers over his last 23 games. His average has not been below .300 since April 25.

4. Kyler Burke: OF, Peoria
Stats: .279 AVG, 4 HR, 27 RBI, .349 OBP

He leads all of minor league and major league baseball with 27 doubles. Over half of his 57 base hits have gone for extra bases, and he also has 22 walks.

5. Tony Thomas: 2B, Tennessee (Class AA)
Stats: .288 AVG, 8 HR, 20 RBI, .367 OBP

He is having another good month with the bat and leads his team in home runs. As a leadoff hitter, he's batting .305 as opposed to .188 outside of the spot.


1. Casey Coleman: RHP, Tennessee
Stats: 6-2, 2.73 ERA, 69.1 IP, 36 K, 25 BB

There hasn't been a consistent, clear-cut favorite at the top of this list all year, but Coleman is as close as it gets. He enters the week with four consecutive quality starts and the lowest ERA for any starter in the Cubs' system (minimum 0.8 IP per team game). He has held opponents to three runs or fewer in nine of his 12 starts.

2. Chris Archer: RHP, Peoria
Stats: 2-2, 2.18 ERA, 45.1 IP, 57 K, 29 BB

His walk totals are a bit high, and his innings pitched are considerably lower than most every other starter due to pitch count restraints, but he has shown signs of dominance. He has an average against of .179 and has not allowed an earned run in six of his 12 starts.

3. Jay Jackson: RHP, Tennessee
Stats: 3-3, 3.21 ERA, 56.0 IP, 54 K, 21 BB

He has been on a roll since his fourth start of the season. Since then, he has had five quality starts and two outings of one-run ball in a pair of five-inning contests. He also has been near the top of the Cubs' system in strikeouts for most all season.

4. Chris Carpenter: RHP, Peoria
Stats: 2-3, 3.04 ERA, 56.1 IP, 54 K, 30 BB

He has held steady this season despite being victimized by poor run support at times. He has allowed more than two earned runs in a start only once in his last six outings.

5. Casey Lambert: LHP, Tennessee
Stats: 4-4, 3.36 ERA, 56.1 IP, 25 K, 14 BB

He hasn't been overpowering, but has held his own and kept his team in games in his first year as a starter. He is coming off a season-high eight-strikeout performance in his last outing (June 9 vs. Chattanooga) and has walked just four batters total in his last five starts.

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