Two of the best middle infielders in the Minor Leagues -- shortstop Addison Russell and second baseman Jose Peraza, ranked Nos. 11 and 97 on MLBPipeline.com's Top 100 Prospects list -- are enough to guarantee an entertaining series this week between Double-A Tennessee and Mississippi. But on Wednesday, another top up-the-middle player will join the fray as the Cubs promote center fielder Albert Almora, No. 14 on the Top 100, to Tennessee.
Mississippi and Tennessee split the first two games of the series, which continues Wednesday at 7:15 p.m. ET. Fans can watch the game on MiLB.TV.
Almora, the Cubs' No. 4 prospect, started the season slowly at Class A Advanced Daytona, hitting .253/.266/.352 in April. Almora has been hot of late, however, finishing his time in the Florida State League on a six-game hitting streak. Overall this season, Almora is hitting .283/.306/.406 with seven home runs and six stolen bases in 89 games.
At Tennessee, Almora joins Russell, the Cubs' No. 3 prospect. Russell has hit .220/.278/.420 with three home runs in 13 games since being traded by the A's in the Jeff Samardzija deal. Overall this season, Russell is hitting .263/.349/.421 with four home runs and five stolen bases in 31 games.
The Braves are led by Peraza, the Braves' No. 3 prospect. Peraza spent the first half of the season with Class A Advanced Lynchburg, and he earned a promotion after hitting .342/.365/.454 with 35 stolen bases in 66 games. Peraza has been even better since the promotion, and he is hitting .373/.403/.475 with 13 stolen bases in 27 games at Mississippi.
Peraza's breakout season earned him a spot on the World roster at the SiriusXM All-Star Futures Game. The 20-year-old leads all Minor Leaguers with 139 hits and ranks third with 49 stolen bases this season.
Mississippi has also gotten a solid season from third baseman Kyle Kubitza, the Braves' No. 9 prospect. Kubitza is hitting .301/.405/.467 with four home runs and 17 stolen bases this season. Kubitza's on-base percentage is the third best in the Southern League, in part because he has drawn 54 walks in 95 games.
Also highlighting the day's Minor League slate are Twins right-handers Alex Meyer and Kohl Stewart, ranked Nos. 23 and 31 on the Top 100. Meyer will lead Triple-A Rochester against Durham at 7:05 p.m. ET in a game that can be seen on MiLB.TV. Stewart will take the ball for Class A Cedar Rapids at Bowling Green at 8:05 p.m. ET.
Top prospect probables
Tyler Anderson (Rockies' No. 10), Tulsa at Springfield
Sean Brady (Indians' No. 17), Mahoning Valley at State College
Tyler Danish (White Sox No. 4), Winston-Salem vs. Potomac
Michael Fulmer (Mets' No. 14), St. Lucie at Tampa
Alex Gonzalez (Rangers' No. 5), Frisco at Midland
Severino Gonzalez (Phillies' No. 6), Reading at Erie
J.R. Graham (Braves' No. 6), Mississippi at Tennessee
Luis Heredia (Pirates' No. 9), West Virginia at Hickory
David Holmberg (Reds' No. 6), Louisville vs. Columbus
Pierce Johnson (Cubs' No. 8), Tennessee vs. Mississippi
Nate Karns (Rays' No. 7), Durham vs. Rochester
Dace Kime (Indians' No. 13), Lake County vs. Wisconsin
Steven Matz (Mets' No. 10), Binghamton at Portland
Cory Mazzoni (Mets' No. 11), Las Vegas at Tacoma
Alex Meyer (Twins' No. 3), Rochester at Durham
Jon Moscot (Reds' No. 20), Pensacola vs. Mobile
Ariel Pena (Brewers' No. 17), Nashville vs. Colorado Springs
Alex Reyes (Cardinals' No. 5), Peoria vs. Lansing
Sal Romano (Reds' No. 14), Dayton vs. Quad Cities
Adrian Sampson (Pirates' No. 19), Altoona at New Britain
Blake Snell (Rays' No. 9), Charlotte at Clearwater
Kohl Stewart (Twins' No. 4), Cedar Rapids at Bowling Green
Jake Thompson (Tigers' No. 3), Erie vs. Reading
Austin Voth (Nationals' No. 16), Potomac at Winston-Salem