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An article by Tommy Birch of the Des Moines Register spread around Cubs twitter last week. Birch wrote about Josh Vitters, the Cubs first round pick in the 2007 draft. Vitters, the third overall pick, was a high school third baseman out of California. He and Mike Moustakas, who went second, were considered the two best high school hitters of the draft. Vanderbilt lefty David Price went first to Rays.
If you've been a Cubs fan for the past decade, you know that Vitters did not pan out. Despite putting up decent minor league numbers (.304/.356/.513 with 17 HR in 110 games in 2012), he could never adjust to major league pitching. During Theo's first season, Vitters and Brett Jackson were called up in early August. Vitters struggled mightily.
Josh Vitters, 2012
The next summer, Theo and Co. got their future star third baseman, Kris Bryant, with the second pick in the 2013 draft. Vitters and the Cubs parted ways after 2014. After signing a minor league contract with the Rockies, Vitters was released in March of 2015 and took the rest of the year off from baseball. Vitters decided to give baseball one more shot and played for the Bridgeport Bluefish—an Indy ball team—in 2016. Now, only 27, he faces another season of baseball at the lowest professional level, playing for the Sioux City Explorers against teams like the Kansas City T-Bones and Wichita Wingnuts.
How's he doing so far this year? Not good. In 78 at-bats, Vitters has just 13 hits (.167). As I was looking at the Explorers' team stats, I noticed another infamous Cubs player on their roster, Tony Campana. Campana, now 31, was a speedy outfielder and fan favorite—myself excluded—in 2011 and 2012. He stole 54 bases (59 attempts) in just 184 games with the Cubs. After 2012, Campana bounced around a bit before finding his way to Sioux City. He is doing much better than Vitters, hitting .286 in 77 at-bats.
According to Birch, the two players share an apartment together in Sioux City. They can celebrate tonight, after coming back from a 7-0 deficit to beat the Gary RailCats Sunday afternoon.
Never forget, Cubs fans.