With all major league rosters expanding in about 3 weeks or so. I thought, I would look at players that might get the call to the majors. The Cubs have 39 players active on the 40 man-roster. Angel Guzman is on the 40 man-roster, but since he's on the 60 day DL, he does not take up a spot. These are players who have not seen the majors this year.
SS Darwin Barney: I expect him to be called up and he will platoon with Blake DeWITT at 2B. DeWITT plays against righties and Barney plays against lefties. Also, he could give a day off to SS Starlin Castro. He's a true SS unlike Mike Fontenot who's the backup SS. Barney has put up a nice average this year. He's batting .300 in 474 at-bats, but he does not take a lot of walks and his OBP is not too great. GM Jim Hendry said Barney has a future with the Cubs and a report said Barney is expected to be the next Cub to be called up. He's currently not on the 40 man-roster.
1B Brain LaHair: He's another one I expect to be called up. He has posted nice numbers for Triple A this year. In my own opinion, I would of liked to see him called up over 1B Micah Hoffpauir. Hoffpauir was called up when 1B Derrek Lee was placed on the bereavement list. Hoffpaur is good at Triple A, but sucks in the majors. LaHair has posted a nice season and I think it would of been fair to see him up over Hoffpauir. He's currently not on the 40 man-roster.
2B Matt Camp: He probably won't get called up, but I would like to see him in the majors. I've been a fan of him because he will post average stats and can play 3B. He made the transition from 3B to 2nd this year. Just like DeWITT who has done the same thing this year. So, I highly doubt he gets called up because he's just average and the Cubs really don't need another IF like that. I can see Ryan Theriot in him. He's currently not on the 40 man-roster.
P Jeff Samardzija: I know he started this season in the majors, but has not been re-called since being sent down. I'm positive he will be called up. He has posted nasty stats before yesterdays game. H was 9-1 with a low 3's era and that's not bad. He's starting for Triple A, but he's a RP for the Cubs. He finally got a 2nd pitch and that's a cutter. When he has been in the majors, he only had a fastball. Scouts have said, the cutter has been a good pitch and Jeff is getting a lot of strikeouts on that pitch. That's a good sign and it would be nice, if he can keep that up in the majors. He's currently on the 40 man-roster .
OF Sam Fuld: I'm 50-50 on him getting called up. He has not been good in Triple A, but his glove is stellar and I like that. He hustles on every play and has no fear for his body. It depends what happens with other roster moves. Then, it will be known if Fuld will or not be called up. He's currently on the 40 man-roster.
C Welington Castillo: I know he's on the Cubs roster now, but he could be sent down before September comes. He was called up, when Soto was placed on the 15 day DL. Soto is expected to be on the DL, for only the 15 days. Castillo has put up OK stats in the minors. I think, if Castillo puts up the same numbers as Hill or better numbers, he will be the backup catcher next year. Then, the Cubs will non-tender Hill and that will make him a free agent. The Cubs will save money on that move too. Castillo is expected to be in the Cubs lineup tonight vs. lefty Barry Zito. I'm looking forward to that. He's currently on the 40 man-roster.
1B Micah Hoffpauir: I know he's on the Cubs roster right now but he could be sent back down when Lee is activated from the bereavement list. Lee could come off the list as early as Friday. Even if Hoffpauir is sent down before September, he will be called up again. I have no doubt in my mind. At least, the Cubs can see if he can ever hit in the majors. He destroys Triple A but does no damage in the majors. And, I don't get why and how. He's currently on the 40 man roster.
P Rafael Dolis: He has been pretty good this year, but is still in Double A. So, I don't know if the Cubs would be willing to call him up. Also, he's a starter and there are no openings in the starting rotation. I am pretty sure, the Cubs won't put him as a RP because he could have a pretty good career ahead of him as a starter. I don't expect any starters from the minors to be called up. He's currently on the 40 man roster.
Players that might get the call back to the majors. These players have seen the majors, sometime this year. We will probably see most, if not all the players be re-called.
1) P Mitch Atkins
2) P Brain Schlitter
3) P Jef Stevens
4) P Jeff Gray (I don't see him being re-called)
Players that could be the "Tyler Colvin" this year. However, I don't expect their to be a "Tyler Colvin" call-up.
OF Tony Campana: He's putting up a nice season for the Smokies this year and could make the majors soon. But, he's getting up their in age. At the age of 24. This can be the true "Tyler Colvin". He's an OF, average defender, 24 and a lefty. However, I think their are other OF in front of him to be called up. Like, Sam Fuld and James Adduci. He's currently not on the 40 man-roster.
P Ryan Buchter: He has put up OK stats in the minors, but is a relief pitcher and the Cubs need to try new faces in the bullpen. Because, what they have now in the pen is not working out. It would be nice for the Cubs to call another pitcher up, to make his major league debut. But like I said, it's very unlikely. He's currently not on the 40 man-roster.
Like I said on top, the Cubs would have to clear spots on the 40 man-roster to call up some players. Right now, they have 1 spot open to call-up 1 player. Here are some scenarios to make room on the 40 man-roster.
1) If the Cubs know, John Grabow and/or Esmalin Caridad will not come back this season, they could move them to the 60 day DL from the 15 day DL. That will open 2 more spots on the 40 man-roster.
2) Mike Fontenot, Jeff Baker and Xavier Nady could be claimed and traded. I think that all 3 will be traded, time September 1st comes. Then, that will open 3 more spots on the 40 man-roster.
But, here are moves the Cubs could make; that will not help make room on the 40 man-roster.
1) The Cubs could activate P John Grabow, P Esmalin Caridad, P Carlos Silva and C Geovany Soto from the 15 day DL. Nothing will happen with the 40 man-roster, but spots will be taken up. That means, we will see less players from the minors. Also, the Cubs will activate Derrek Lee from the bereavement list in the next week or so.
Here's the Cubs 40 man-roster.
I know all these moves won't happen, but they could. We just have to wait and see what happens, come September. With activations off the DL, waiver trades and call-ups.