Cubs 19-year old catcher Miguel Amaya continues to impress down at the Single-A level. Amaya was first selected to the league All-Star game, then caught Yu Darvish’s rehab, and now has been named to the 2018 All-Star Futures Game.
Amaya, the Cubs No. 10 overall ranked prospect by MLB Pipeline, is having a spectacular third year. Amaya is batting .271 with 10 homers and 40 RBI through 73 games this season. As a result, he was named to the Midwest League All-Star game as the starting catcher for the East.
The Cubs landed Amaya during the 2015-16 international signing period for $1 million. He has been in the farm system for three years now, beginning in the Dominican Summer League in ’16 and working his way up to Low-A Eugene last season. Amaya played in 58 games each year in ’16 and ”17. He’s done all this and just turned 19 in March.
In 2017 with Eugene, Amaya’s offense was still developing (.228/.226/.338) but was a premier defensive catcher. He was touted as by far the best catcher in the Northwest League due to his work behind the plate. The hitting has seemed to turn on now for Amaya as he continues to impress.
The big difference you can tell about Amaya at the plate this year is a noticeable change in his batting stance. He’s bending his knees over the plate slightly more while extending out his arms further to get closer to the ball. It’s not a big change, but the smallest things can turn an average hitter into a plus hitter. Here’s a side-by-side comparison of Amaya batting at the same angle last year and then this year:
It should be interesting to see if Amaya continues to make the great strides he’s accomplished so far. It’s no surprise that Amaya would be selected to the All-Star Futures Game, as he’s taken his game to another level this year. He will be on Team World, coached by Red Sox legend David Ortiz.
The Futures Game takes place on Sunday, July 15th at Nationals Park at 4:00 pm ET on MLB Network. Former-Cub Eloy Jimenez was in the game last year, and Former-Cub Dylan Cease is on Team U.S. this year.