As of Sunday, June 14, teams were allowed to add undrafted free agents to their pipelines. These players will largely be working out at home, and word is that Cubs new Director of Hitting Justin Stone will travel to visit the newly signed hitters to get their development going. Most of the players signed so far across the league have been college seniors.
Here are synopses of Cubs signings so far, with video when available. The team might have signed more players than this, as publicizing minor signings isn't a major priority.
Bradlee Beesley, outfielder, Cal Poly
Beesley is a rather versatile type of outfielder. Despite hitting only four homers in his nearly 650 at-bats in college, he was among Baseball America's 429th prospect on the Draft 500 listing of players. He seems the type who might be very useful on a Midwest League team, either as a starter or key reserve. Here’s video of him as a freshman in 2017.
Scott McKeon, middle infield, Coastal Carolina.
McKeon had an OPS a smidge over 1.000 in the shortened college campaign this year. Coastal plays a reasonable schedule, so it was against representative competition. Like Beesley, he was on the pre-draft BA top 500 list, checking in at 438. He's probably in the range of a Zack Short addition from a few years back.
Scott Kobos, left-handed pitcher, Coastal Carolina
The Cubs have tapped into the Coastal Carolina pipeline somewhat routinely the past decade. Tommy LaStella went to Coastal as did catcher Will Remillard, pitcher Josh Conway and current prospect catcher Bryce Wyndham. When players function well in a system, even if they haven't graduated to the MLB level, it's worth revisiting. Kobos has been a starter and reliever with the Chanticleers, starting four games in 2020.
Graham Lawson, relief pitcher, South Carolina
You'd figure the Cubs might look for players with velocity, but command questions. Lawson fits the criteria. In the 2020 campaign, Lawson allowed only two hits and one run over six college frames, fanning eight, but walking seven. When baseball returns, the hope would be to get one or two of these arms to and through the lowest minor league full-season levels.
Ben Leeper, right-handed relief pitcher, Oklahoma State
Leeper pitched in six games for Oklahoma State in 2020 covering 7⅓ innings, fanning 14 and walking six. Put him in the same basic range as Lawson if you're positioning them on a recent success-versus-wildness chart.
Bailey Reid, right-handed relief pitcher, Westmont College
Reid has been quite successful at Westmont recently, allowing no runs in 2020 over 9⅔ innings, as well as 12⅔ scoreless in 2019. Here are his complete college numbers, and some video.
Jacob Wetzel, outfielder, Frederick Community College
This article summarizes my knowledge of Wetzel and Frederick Community College.
Matt Mervis, first base, Duke
A left-handed hitter and right-handed thrower, Mervis is a valid two-way player. He had a 1.047 OPS for the Blue Devils in 2020, and also pitched two scoreless frames. If only minor league games were going this summer, he could be the Cubs’ first realistic two-way player.
Sam Thoresen, right-handed pitcher, Minnesota
A regularly used pitcher on a really good Golden Gophers squad the last few years, he started some in 2019, and recorded a save in 2020. In a bit over 80 career innings for the Big Ten school, he fanned 99 and walked 67. That's what you're looking at for a number of these types. If you're expecting a quick ascension to Wrigley for any, it's likely a bit misguided. They're all long-term plays with unlikely payouts. Here’s video of Thoresen from high school three years ago:
As always, we await further developments, which is a far-too-common refrain with no actual affiliated baseball being played