Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Wroad to Wrigley Wednesday - 2015 Iowa Cubs Part 2

After my Cubs trip last August, I was all gung-ho to show off all my minor league team set pickups in a new alliteratively named series I called Wroad to Wrigley Wednesday. That lasted all of one post before the blog fell silent. But luckily, I had started the next one so I'm clearing it out of the draft folder.

In that first write up, I showed off the coaches, trainers (cards 1-5) and the mascot (card #36). Today, I have cards 6-15. If you know anything about the big league Cubs, you'll recognize quite a few of these names today.

#6 Yoanner Negrin

Yoanner Negrin has been in the Cubs system since 2011 but has yet to make his MLB debut. He is currently playing in the Mexican League.

#7 Drake Britton

Drake Britton is actually a familiar name to me but from outside the Cubs. He was formerly within the Red Sox organization and came through the Carolina League (my local minor league team's league) a few years back. I believe I have a Topps Pro Debut card signed by him. Britton made his MLB debut with the Red Sox in 2013 and has 27 2/3 innings under his belt between 2013 and 2014. The Cubs claimed him off waivers in February 2015 and he spent the entire last season with Iowa. He was a free agent after the season and signed with Tigers. He is currently with their AAA team, the Toledo Mud Hens.

#8 Rubi Silva

Rubi Silva is a career minor league Cub, joining the system in 2011, like fellow Cuban, Yoanner Negrin. He is currently playing in the Mexican League.

#9 Adron Chambers

Adron Chambers has a World Series ring after being on the St. Louis Cardinals roster in 2011. He was a free agent following the 2013 season and played in the Houston Astros and Toronto Blue Jays systems before finding his way to Iowa for the 2015 season. On November 3, Chambers was suspended 50 games for a "drug of abuse", whatever that means. I guess as opposed to PEDs? On November 6, he was granted free agency.

#10 Felipe Paulino

Feliipe Paulino has Major League experience with the Houston Astros, Colorado Rockies, Kansas City Royals and Chicago White Sox. He signed a minor league deal with the Cubs in May 2015 and as of Decmeber is with the Cleveland Indians organization.

#11 Kris Bryant

Finally, a player with some actual Chicago Cubs experience. You may have heard of this undercover Lyft driver, Frozen lip syncher, oh and 2015 National League Rookie of the Year. He hit two home runs in a game, including his third career grand slam but was over shadowed by Jake Arrieta's no-hitter. There was some controversy about him making the big league club out of spring training last year and due to his contract status, the big wigs from the front office kept him in Iowa for a few extra days. He split 2014 between the Tennessee Smokies and Iowa Cubs but played just 7 games for the I-Cubs in 2015.

#12 Addison Russell

Addison Russell was the big coup in the deal the sent Jeff Samardzija to the Oakland A's in 2014. He finished that season in Tennessee, played 11 games in Iowa in 2015 and has been in Chicago ever since. He debuted at second base, swapped positions with 3x All-Star Starlin Castro and is now firmly cemented as the Cubs shortstop of the future.

#13 Javier Baez

Javier Baez was the Cubs 1st Round draft pick (11th overall) in 2011 and made his Cubs debut in 2014. Primarily a middle infielder, Baez has played 1st, 2nd, 3rd and shortstop already in just 8-9 games. He also has some outfield experience in the minors. His flexibility will be key down the stretch.

#14 Arismendy Alcantara

Arismendy Alcantara signed with the Cubs as an international free agent way back in 2008. He played in 70 games in 2014, mostly after the Cubs traded away second baseman Darwin Barney. Unfortunately for Alcantara, he got off to a slow start in 2015 and didn't get called back up after Russell's moderate success. And with the Russell/Baez/Tommy La Stella and Ben Zobrist middle infield platoon, there may not be room for him this year either.

#15 Kyle Schwarber

Last but not least for today's post, we have Kyle Schwarber. It would be hard to believe that Kyle Schwarber was the 3rd best rookie on the Cubs last year but on a stacked young team, he was. Unfortunately, an outfield collision has sidelined him for the rest of 2016, but I'm looking forward to many more Schwar-bombs off the Schwar-board.

That wraps up this week's Wroad to Wrigley post. Next week will have cards 20-30 from this set.


  1. Love this set - very reminiscent of 2008 Topps. I believe Adron got caught with marijuana in his system, or something along those lines. That's typically what they mean when they say "drug of abuse."