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Chicago Cubs: Edwin Jackson, Starting Pitcher
Coming into the offseason, the Cubs looked to revamp their starting rotation. Adding a handful of quality starters, Chicago certainly did so.
The biggest name the Cubs landed this winter was easily Edwin Jackson, formerly with the Nationals. Jackson went 10-11 with a 4.03 ERA in 189.2 innings last season in Washington, and plenty of teams were interested in signing him. He should be a great addition pitching in the No. 3 spot for Chicago.
Cincinnati Reds: Billy Hamilton, Shortstop
It’s only a matter of time before Reds fans have to refrain from blinking so that they don’t miss Billy Hamilton. Easily one of the fastest and most dangerous baserunners of all time, Hamilton could make his way to Cincinnati this season. A shortstop who is expected to play outfield in the future, Hamilton has succeeded in each level he’s played in. In 50 games for Double-A last season, he hit .286/.406/.383 with 10 extra-base hits and 51 steals.
Milwaukee Brewers: Jean Segura, Shortstop
When the Brewers traded away Zack Greinke to the Angels, they took a big risk. Instead of having a Cy Young-caliber starting pitcher, they wanted a shortstop with the capability of becoming a star. That shortstop was Jean Segura, who was a top prospect at the time of the deal. Segura played all right for Milwaukee in limited time last season, but 2013 will be his first full shot in the big leagues. He’s a major factor in the future success of the Brewers.
Pittsburgh Pirates: Gerrit Cole, Starting Pitcher
When a player gets drafted No. 1 overall, a team never knows what it’s going to get. Even after just one year in the minor leagues, the Pirates really have something in Gerrit Cole. Arguably the top prospect in Pittsburgh’s minor league system, Cole is quickly rising through the organization. He was promoted twice during the year and could end up pitching for the Pirates at some point in 2013.
St. Louis Cardinals: Shelby Miller, Starting Pitcher
If Jaime Garcia isn’t ready to start the season, look for Shelby Miller to take his spot in the St. Louis starting rotation. Miller, the Cardinals’ top prospect, pitched briefly in the big leagues last season, but only made one start in six appearances. He struggled for the first time in his young career in 2012 in Triple-A, but is expected to bounce back in a big way. Miller is the future ace of the Cardinals rotation if he can come back with a positive year.