More on the best of the Cubs system

Josh Jackson
Draft · 3 min read

By Josh Jackson / MiLB.com

Below are additional quotes from MiLB.com’s Cubs Prospect Primer:

(Ross D. Franklin/AP)

Ian Happ on his Cactus League

“This camp is a lot of fun. All these guys enjoy what they’re doing. It’s a great atmosphere here, and I’ve had a blast.”

“There’s definitely a lot of work going on before we go out there and start competing during the season. I think there’s definitely a big focus on playing in the games and getting better, but there’s a lot of stuff we do not on the field, not in a game situation, that prepares you for the season.”

“All the fans that come out, it’s been so much fun having 15,000 people at a game. The atmosphere is just awesome.”

Jaron Madison on Eloy Jimenez

“He’s only 20 years old. Our conversation with him last year at the Fall League was, ‘Hey, you’re here at the Fall League, you’re out of gas.’ He’s admitting to us, ‘I’m tired. I need to relax and rest a little bit.’ And we pointed out to him, ‘You had this long season. Well, Kris Bryant is going to have 150 more plate appearances than you’ve had now,’ so being prepared to play all the way into November is what’s next for him and having that high level of play the whole season.”

(Bobby Stevens/MiLB.com)

On Trevor Clifton

“He’s exciting for sure. He’s really come along with his delivery and convinced everyone he can stay as a starter. He’s a special player. If you look at where he was when we drafted him to where he is now, completely different guy — matured, has really filled out and grown into his body, and the stuff and pitchability has all come together, so he’s someone we’re all excited about.”

“Just facing better hitters, sequencing pitches, making sure he knows what he’s doing and not trying to blow fastballs by guys, because those guys can hit fastballs there, so really refining his pitch mix and figuring out how to get better hitters out.”

On Victor Caratini’s defensive work behind the plate:

“The biggest thing for him and something he’s worked on since he made the transition is just his throwing, just quickening up the transfer, being a little bit more compact with that, and then the finer parts of the game: game-calling and connecting with the pitchers, doing a good job of reading hitters and making adjustments in-game. Those are going to be the last challenges for him. He wants to be a good catcher, and he wants to be really good with the pitchers.”