South Bend Cubs announce 2021 Opening Day roster
SOUTH BEND, IN – In conjunction with the Chicago Cubs, the South Bend Cubs have announced their 2021 Opening Day roster. The team consists of 28 players: 15 pitchers, three catchers, five infielders and five outfielders. Of the 14 players rejoining the fray, six were members of the South Bend title winning team in 2019.
Michael Ryan is the new manager in South Bend, joining the team earlier this year after spending seven seasons as a manager in the Pittsburgh Pirates farm system. He spent the last three seasons in Altoona, Pa. with the Double-A affiliate, guiding the Curve to the Eastern League Championship in 2017.
Tony Cougoule will serve as the Pitching Coach. He joined the Cubs organization in 2020 and will begin coaching for the first time in South Bend. On the other side of the ball, Paul McAnulty returns for his third season with the club, second as the team’s Hitting Coach. Eric Patterson will serve as the club’s Assistant Hitting Coach.
The two headliners for this year’s pitching staff on Opening Day are Cubs #9 prospect Ryan Jensen and #18 prospect Burl Carraway. Jensen was a first round pick in 2019 and has logged just 12 innings in his MiLB career, but his electric high-90s fastball ranked as the best fastball in the 2019 draft class. The 21-year-old Carraway is the youngest player on the roster. This will be his first year of professional baseball after being drafted in the second round in 2020.
Other notable pitchers starting the year in High-A South Bend are former ninth round pick from 2018 Derek Casey and right-hander Peyton Remy. Casey and Remy combined for a no-hitter last season on May 6 at Four Winds Field.
Four of the five infielders have been here before. Chase Strumpf enters the season ranked as the Cubs #10 prospect. In his first pro season he climbed the ladder from the Arizona League Cubs, to the Eugene Emeralds, to here with the South Bend Cubs.
Fan favorite Delvin Zinn returns to Four Winds Field to start the 2021 campaign. Zinn appeared in 64 games with South Bend in 2019, hitting .273 with a .341 on-base percentage before getting promoted to Myrtle Beach.
Cole Roederer will once again start the season in downtown South Bend. The second round pick from the 2018 draft led the team in home runs (9), RBIs (60), stolen bases (16) and walks (52) in the 2019 season.
The roster released today is only a preliminary roster and is subject to change.