Matt Mervis

24-Year-Old First Baseman1B
Chicago Cubs AAA
2023 Fantasy Outlook
Mervis, one of the gems of the undrafted free agent class from the shortened five-round pandemic draft of 2020, was one of the breakout hitting prospects of 2022. Not only did he destroy the pitching at High-A (182 wRC+), Double-A (148 wRC+) and Triple-A (152 wRC+), but his strikeout rate dropped and his walk rate increased as the competition improved. Mervis slashed .297/.383/.593 with 15 home runs, a 10.4 BB% and a 14.6 K% in 57 games at Triple-A and had three strikeouts and three walks while homering five times in his first 12 games of the Arizona Fall League. He is seemingly getting better every week en route to tallying 41 home runs in 149 games (and counting) in 2022. The Cubs added veterans Eric Hosmer and Trey Mancini during the offseason, temporarily blocking the path the playing time at first base in the majors, though his long-term outlook at the position remains positive. Mervis' OPS was 1.034 against righties and .869 against lefties, so while he may be worse against same-handed pitching, he won't need a platoon partner when the Cubs deem him ready for the big leagues. Mervis had already drawn plenty of attention as a popular sleeper pick early in offseason drafts, but expect his ADP to trend down heading into spring training with the likelihood that he opens the season at Triple-A Iowa following the Cubs' additions of Hosmer and Mancini. Read Past Outlooks
RANKS
$Signed a $20,000 contract with the Cubs in June of 2020.
Likely to open 2023 at Triple-A
1BChicago Cubs  AAA
January 15, 2023
Mervis will "almost certainly" begin the 2023 season at Triple-A Iowa following the Cubs' offseason signings of Eric Hosmer and Trey Mancini, Sahadev Sharma and Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic report.
ANALYSIS
Though Hosmer and Mancini will be due less than $8 million combined in 2023, the Cubs brought the two veterans aboard with the intention of having them see the bulk of the starts at first base and designated hitter, respectively, to begin the campaign. Because Mervis is a left-handed hitter like Hosmer and the righty-hitting Mancini has performed similarly against right- and left-handed pitching during his career, the Cubs wouldn't have a short-side platoon role available for the 24-year-old, who looks like he'll have to wait for an injury or for one of the two incumbents to struggle before he gets his first taste of the majors. While the offseason moves are disappointing development for Mervis investors who were expecting the power-hitting first baseman to claim an Opening Day role on the heels of a breakout season at the upper levels of the minors and a productive run in the Arizona Fall League, his status as an older prospect along with the Cubs' relatively minimal investment in Hosmer and Mancini still bodes well for his chances at getting an extended run in the big leagues at some point in 2023.
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Could win job in spring training
1BChicago Cubs  AAA
September 25, 2022
Cubs manager David Ross said Saturday that Mervis is on the radar to win a roster spot in spring training, Meghan Montemurro of the Chicago Tribune reports. "There's a big hole for me at first base," Ross said. "No doubt he'll have a great opportunity in front of him moving forward."
ANALYSIS
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Pops up on prospect radar
1BChicago Cubs  AAA
August 2, 2022
Mervis has a .312/.370/.612 batting line with 23 homers, 88 RBI and a 27:79 BB:K across three levels of the minors this year.
ANALYSIS
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