Chicago Cubs infield prospect James Triantos made franchise history Saturday evening, when he received Offensive Player of the Year Award honors for the 2023 Arizona Fall League season.
Triantos becomes the first Cubs player to win the Award, since the Award was introduced in 2021. That same year, Cubs outfield prospect Nelson Velazquez took home AFL MVP honors. Only four Cubs have been named MVP of the Fall League: Velazquez, outfield prospects Jason Dubois (2003) and Sam Fuld (2007) and third base prospect Kris Bryant (2013).
Over 22 games, Triantos batted a remarkable .417, while posting a .495 On Base Percentage and a 1.174 OPS. Triantos led the AFL in triples (5) and placed third in the league in OBP, second in AVG and second in OPS.
San Diego Padres outfield prospect Jakob Marsee was named the 2023 AFL MVP, after slashing .391/.508/1.215 while tallying five home runs and 20 RBI across 24 games.
Triantos’ stellar play has drawn comparisons to Dustin Pedroia, and his impressive performance earned him a spot in the Fall Stars Game last Sunday.
Inside the Cubs recently sat down with Triantos for an exclusive interview. When asked what the keys to his success have been in the Fall League, Triantos made it clear that he wasn’t overthinking things.
“Just keeping it simple,” Triantos said. “I don’t try to do too much. I just get in the ground and start early. That’s really it. That’s it. Keep it simple, get in the ground, start early. That’s it. Those are my two things that I’ve been saying to myself over and over again. And it works for me because it’s easy. It’s easy to repeat and I don’t really define anything else that I’m doing, so I like it that way.”
Triantos spent the majority of the 2023 season at High-A South Bend, where he slashed .285/.363/.753 with four home runs and 46 RBI.