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Russell among Cubs slated for Fall League

Russell among Cubs slated for Fall League

CHICAGO -- Shortstop Addison Russell, ranked No. 3 on MLB.com's list of the Cubs' Top 20 Prospects list, and No. 6 on list of the game's Top 100 Prospects, will play for the Mesa Solar Sox in the Arizona Fall League.

The Cubs acquired the shortstop on July 4 from the Athletics in a deal involving right-handers Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel. Russell is batting .297 in 62 games this season, and since joining Double-A Tennessee, he has hit .297 with 12 home runs and 10 doubles in 44 games.

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A strong right-handed hitter, the 20-year-old Russell batted .282 in 21 games for the Mesa Solar Sox last year, and he was teammates with Cubs prospects Kris Bryant, Albert Almora, Jorge Soler, Wes Darvill, Dallas Beeler, Matt Loosen, Armando Rivero and Lendy Castillo. This year, Castillo will be reunited with some of his teammates from the A's Minor League system who will also be on Mesa.

A first-round pick in the 2012 First-Year Player Draft, Russell batted .275 in 107 games at Class A Advanced Stockton in 2013.

Another player on the Cubs' Top 20 Prospects list who's scheduled to play for Mesa is right-handed pitcher C.J. Edwards (ranked No. 6), who will turn 23 on Sept. 3. In nine starts at Tennessee this year, Edwards has given up 11 earned runs on 26 hits and 18 walks over 44 innings. He's struck out 45. In his Minor League career, Edwards has given up two home runs over 233 innings.

Russell and Edwards will be joined by other Cubs prospects on Mesa, including right-handed pitchers Zach Cates and Ivan Pineyro, lefty Gerardo Concepcion, first baseman Dan Vogelbach (No. 11) and outfielder Jacob Hannemann. Hannemann will be on the taxi squad and play twice a week.

Vogelbach was batting .266 with 15 home runs, 27 doubles and 72 RBIs at Class A Daytona this season.

The Arizona Fall League will open on Oct. 7, and teams will play at the Spring Training stadiums in the Phoenix area, including Cubs Park in Mesa, Ariz. Bryant was named the Fall League's Most Valuable Player last year.

Carrie Muskat is a reporter for MLB.com. She writes a blog, Muskat Ramblings, and you can follow her on Twitter @CarrieMuskat. Manny Randhawa is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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