With the trade deadline passed, the Chicago Cubs have passed what is likely the last significant event of their 2012 season. One thing the franchise is likely looking to do with the remainder of the year is get a feel for which young players might be ready to contribute at the major league level in the 2013 season.
Most of Chicago's best prospects are a bit away from the majors, but there are two who are likely to see some time this year: third baseman Josh Vitters and center fielder Brett Jackson. According to Bruce Levine of ESPN Chicago, it's possible that the two will be in Chicago as early as this month:
Josh Vitters and Brett Jackson may be called this month. Both would play every day according to Sveum.— Bruce Levine (@ESPNBruceLevine) August 1, 2012
Jackson is considered by most to be Chicago's top hitting prospect after recent first round picks Javier Baez and Albert Almora. He has spent this season in Triple-A Iowa, hitting .253/.336/.478 with 47 extra base hits (15 of which are home runs).
Vitters was the No. 3 overall pick in the 2007 draft, but has been seen as a disappointment so far in his career thanks mostly to a lack of plate discipline. That said, he has put up impressive stats in Triple-A as a 22-year-old this year, hitting .296/.349/.496 with 15 homers.
For updates, stay tuned to SB Nation Chicago. For more comprehensive coverage of this series, head over to Cubs blog Bleed Cubbie Blue and PIttsburgh Pirates blog Bucs Dugout.