Here’гe Three Toр Internatіonal Proѕрeсtѕ That The Cubѕ Exрeсted To Sign In 2023

The Chicago Cubs are the presumed favorite to land three of MLB Pipeline’s top 50 International Free Agents in 2023.

MLB Pipeline’s Jesse Sanchez recently gave an overview of the upcoming international free agency period, which begins January 15. In it, the article states that the Chicago Cubs will be one of the teams that have salary dropped to $5,284,000. Even so, the Cubs are still expected to sign 3 of the MLB Pipeline Top 50 potential clients.

Chicago is seen as the leader for Derniche Valdez from the Dominican Republic, Ludwig Espinoza from Venezuela, and Angel Cepeda, also from the Dominican Republic. All three are listed as shortstops, yet each is 16 years old, they all have plenty of time to change.

Espinoza comes in at 14th on the top 50, earning above-average hit and fielding grades from Pipeline. The switch hitter projects to be a top-of-the lineup hitter with average power, he does a good job of putting the ball in play according to Pipeline. His fielding projects to be above-average as well, potentially helping him stick at shortstop.

Cepeda ranks 19th on the list. Pipeline says he can play short, second and third, and he has the fitness to play in the center if a team wants to go in that direction. That trait is reflected in his 55-step running kit. Cepeda also boasts a 55th hit tool, with Pipeline saying he predicts like a middleweight bat.

The Cubs seem to be targeting high-offensive upside bats with this latest group of talent. Chicago has seen an influx of young talent over the last few seasons, and with a large emphasis placed on pitching at the 2022 deadline and picking 15 pitchers in its latest draft class (16 if two-way player Nazier Mule is included), the team may be using International Free Agency as a way to help supplement the farm with some new bats.