The Farm Boy Files is a feature designed to better acquaint ourselves with our Cubs prospects. Last time we featured RHP Kyle Smit, and this week we will continue with the Arizona Fall League theme by taking a look at young Chris Archer.
Name: Christopher Archer
Basic Stuff: 6’3″, 180
Born September 26, 1988 in Raleigh, North Carolina
Drafted in the 5th round by the Cleveland Indians round in 2006. Acquired by the Cubs in the Mark DeRosa trade… don’t hold it against him.
Stats: In almost equal time between high-A Daytona and double-A Tennessee this season, Chris went 15-3 with a 2.34 ERA in 142.1 innings pitched. He racked up 149 strikeouts to 65 walks and recorded a 1.17 WHIP. This fine showing earned Chris the distinction of being named Cubs minor league pitcher of the year.
Scouting Report: Chris has a low 90’s fastball, a good slider and a good change-up to go along with plus arm strength. His command has improved quite a bit from recent years.
“He’s been outstanding for us from the day he walked in. He’s come into a level where there’s some pretty good hitters and done a good job.” -Tennessee manager Bill Dancy
“Some guys come up and have stuff, but they can’t command it. He doesn’t always command it, but when he gets in trouble, he knows how to get out of it. A lot of guys come up and they struggle but don’t know how to get out of it.” -Tennessee pitching coach Dennis Lewallyn
“When I was with the Indians and last year, my first year with the Cubs, all I thought was, ‘OK, let’s just throw strikes, let’s just get it in there.’ Now, it’s ‘This guy he can hit, so I’m going to give him fastballs low and away.’ Instead of just trying to throw strikes, I’m setting hitters up and they start swinging at off-speed stuff earlier in the count.” -Chris
Chris has definitely propelled himself to the top of my prospect-watch list! Be sure to keep tuning in once the AFL gets underway… I’ll be keeping tabs on Chris and all the other Cubs reps.