Hours before their game Tuesday, the South Bend Cubs posted their typical daily starting lineup tweet.
Except there was something different about their lineup on this day: It included the Cubs’ top 2 prospects, and three of their top 10 overall, according to MLB Pipeline’s rankings.
While we can’t verify the “best outfield” in the minor leagues assertion, the excitement around the Cubs’ farm system is palpable. Pipeline recently ranked it the 10th-best in baseball.
And on this night just outside Grand Rapids, Mich., fans got a look at the Cubs’ potential future outfield in Brennen Davis, Pete Crow-Armstrong and Owen Caissie.
Davis, who opened the season as the Cubs’ consensus top prospect but is now No. 2 to Crow-Armstrong, began a rehab assignment last week as he returns from May back surgery.
He joined South Bend on Tuesday and went 1-for-5. Davis, Pipeline’s No. 51 overall prospect, is scheduled to play a few games with South Bend and then rejoin the Triple-A Iowa Cubs.
“He’s doing well,” Cubs VP of scouting Jared Banner said. “He’s keeping a positive attitude. He’s worked really hard with his rehab.
“At this point, it’s just about getting him back into game activity and knocking some of that rust off.”
Crow-Armstrong, Pipeline’s No. 31 overall prospect, went 3-for-5 with two RBIs out of the leadoff spot.
Crow-Armstrong, who played in the Futures Game last month — like Davis in 2021— is now hitting .279/.324/.510 with South Bend and a combined .311/.377/.530 with 15 homers and 53 RBIs between Low-A and High-A this season.
No. 9 prospect Alexander Canario was promoted from Double-A to Triple-A this week, but don't expect Crow-Armstrong to replace him at Tennessee.
“No, he’s not,” said Banner when asked if Crow-Armstrong is heading to Tennessee in place of Canario. “Not right now.”
Then there’s Caissie, the 2020 second-round pick acquired in the Yu Darvish trade and Cubs’ No. 10 prospect. He’s spent the entire season in South Bend and is hitting .253/.345/.399.
The Cubs have a handful of exciting outfielders in their system, including Canario and No. 3 prospect Kevin Alcántara.
And on Tuesday, Davis, Crow-Armstrong and Caissie might have offered one glimpse at what the outfield at Wrigley Field looks like down the line.