Iowa Cubs pitcher Caleb Kilian came over in the Kris Bryant trade

Iowa Cubs pitcher Caleb Kilian’s name is still synonymous with a huge trade from 2021.

Kilian, who was drafted by the San Francisco Giants, came over to the Chicago Cubs as part of the Kris Bryant trade. Being part of a deal that shipped off one of the biggest stars of the team’s World Series win in 2016 is how Kilian is most known by Cubs fans.

He’d like to change that.

“It’s an honor to be apart of that,” Kilian said. “But I want to make a name for myself. I want to be Caleb Kilian.”

He’s on his way to doing that. Kilian, the top pitching prospect for the Chicago Cubs, according to the MLB Pipeline, is now one step away from reaching the big leagues. He’s in his first season in Triple-A and his second season in the Cubs’ organization after he was brought in from the Giants, along with minor league outfielder Alexander Canario.

“He’s got plus stuff across the board,” Iowa manager Marty Pevey said.

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Former Texas Tech pitcher Caleb Kilian is now the top pitching prospect in the Chicago Cubs' organization.

That’s why the Giants drafted the Texas Tech product in the eighth round of the 2019 MLB Draft. Kilian made an instant impact on the minors, allowing just one unearned run in 16 innings of work across Rookie Ball and short season that year. Kilian didn’t pitch in 2020 when the minor league season was canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. But he picked up right where he left off when the minors returned in 2021.

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