Cubs prospect Baez continues power surge

Cubs prospect Baez continues power surge

August 17, 2013, 11:15 am
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Tony Andracki

There's no slowing down Javier Baez right now.

The Cubs' top prospect came through again for the Tennessee Smokies, drilling a two-run walk-off homer in the bottom of the ninth inning Friday night.

It was Baez's second straight day with a game-winning bomb and gave the Smokies their sixth straight win and a 33-20 second-half record.

[RELATED: Baez hit a "majestic, soaring blast" Thursday night]

The Smokies are on a roll, having won nine of 10 and are poised for postseason play thanks to a trio of Cubs prospects enjoying breakout seasons.

Baez now has 14 homers and 37 RBI in 38 games for Double-A Tennessee with a .293/.355/.631 slash line. He has 31 home runs total this year.

[WATCH: When will Cubs prospects hit the big leagues?]

Christian Villanueva, acquired from the Rangers in the Ryan Dempster deal last summer, struggled initially in his first stint in Double-A, but is hitting .305/.351/.543 in the second half.

He has been especially hot of late, hitting .462 (12-for-26) over his last eight games with seven runs, eight doubles, two homers, nine RBI and five walks compared to just one strikeout.

[RELATED: Cubs pitching prospects closing out the season in style]

On the season, the 22-year-old third baseman is hitting .270 with an .800 OPS, 37 doubles, 16 homers and 63 RBI while playing very good defense at the hot corner.

Arismendy Alcantara has taken maybe the biggest jump of any Cubs prospect this season in his first go-round at Double-A. He's shown power (13 homers, 29 doubles), speed (27 steals in 31 chances) and patience. His 52 walks are seven more than he earned in the previous three seasons combined.

The 21-year-old infielder, who stole home earlier this week, has also shown a good attitude, moving from his natural position of shortstop to second base to accommodate Baez.

[MORE -- Follow the money: Cubs trying to find talent all over the world]

Check out the video of Baez's walk-off shot from Friday night.