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2018 Organization Report: Colorado Rockies

by Rob Gordon

Organization Grades

Hitting: A- ... Pitching: C+ ... Top-end Talent: C+ ... Depth: C+ ... Overall: B-



Minor League Affiliates

Triple-A: Albuquerque (Pacific Coast League)
Double-A: Hartford (Eastern League)
High-A: Lancaster (California League)
Low-A: Asheville (South Atlantic League)
Short-season: Boise (Northwest League)
Rookie: Grand Junction (Pioneer League)



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1. Brendan Rodgers (SS) ... 6-0, 180 ... R/R ... 21 ... 2015 (1) HS (FL)
YearTeam (LG)ABBA/OBP/Slgbb%ct% EyeHR/SB
2016Asheville (SAL)442.281/.342/.4807780.3619/6
2017Lancaster (Calif)222.387/.407/.6713840.1712/2
2017Hartford (East)150.260/.323/.4135760.226/0
2018Hartford (East)357.275/.342/.4938790.3917/12
2018Albuquerque (PCL)69.232/.264/.2901770.060/0
Comments: Top SS prospect in the NL blitzed through A+ with a 1.078 OPS, earning a mid-season jump to AA. Hand injury cost him 3 weeks in August and was only blemish. Features plus bat speed and above-average power, but can tend to be pull happy. Plus arm and good hands should keep him at SS for now.

Development Path: Rodgers finished 2017 at Double-A and will likely start 2018 back at Hartford. The Rockies have no reason to rush Rodgers, but another slow start from Trevor Story could result in a mid-season debut for Rodgers.

Fantasy Impact: Rodgers has the tools to be a middle-of-the-order hitter who plays SS. He'll steal a couple bases, but power will be his calling card.

Upside Grade: 9C


2. Ryan McMahon (1B,2B,3B) ... 6-2, 185 ... L/R ... 23 ... 2013 (2) HS (CA)
YearTeam (LG)ABBA/OBP/Slgbb%ct% EyeHR/SB
2017Hartford (East)181.326/.390/.53610780.516/7
2017Albuquerque (PCL)289.374/.411/.6127820.4014/4
2017Colorado (NL)19.158/.333/.21121741.000/0
2018Albuquerque (PCL)224.290/.339/.5316730.2511/3
2018Colorado (NL)181.232/.307/.3769650.285/1
Comments: Bounce-back season proved his offensive chops were legit and that 2016 was an injury-related fluke. Smooth LH stroke generates loft and natural power. Reduced K% rate from 30% to 17% in 2017. Split time at 2B, 3B, and 1B in preparation for UT role until an permanent opening becomes available.

Development Path: It will be interesting to see what the Rockies do with McMahon in 2018. He currently doesn't have a path to full-time AB, but could fill in at 3B, 2B, 1B, and the OF. After hitting .374 at Triple-A, he has nothing left to prove in the minors.

Fantasy Impact: McMahon has the pedigree and tools to hit .280 with 20+ HR in the majors. If he qualifies at multiple positions, especially 2B, that gives him added value.

Upside Grade: 9C


3. Riley Pint (RHP) ... 6-4, 195 ... 20 ... 2016 (1) HS (KS)
YearTeam (LG)IPERAWHIPCtlDomCmdOppBA
2016Grand Junction (Pio)37.05.351.7805.68.81.6.279
2017Asheville (SAL)93.05.421.6705.77.61.3.256
2018Boise (Nwst)8.01.131.63010.19.00.9.143
2018Asheville (SAL)0.181.0012.00054.00.00.0
Comments: Former high has top-of-the rotation stuff, but struggles repeating mechanics and finding the strike zone. Double-plus FB sits at 95-99, topping at 101 mph is backed up by plus CB, along with SL and CU that flashes plus with late fade. Throws with effort and needs work to reach his potential.

Development Path: Pint has not yet earned a promotion, so could well well return to Low-A to start 2018, rather than attempt to brave the tough environment of the California League. Once he shows some consistency, he'll be on his way, but he's still just 20 years old.

Fantasy Impact: Upside is substantial, but Pint has yet to post an ERA below 5.00. Likely to be highly volatile until he figures out how to find the strike zone on a consistent basis.

Upside Grade: 9D



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4. Colton Welker (3B) ... 6-0, 205 ... R/R ... 20 ... 2016 (4) HS (FL)
YearTeam (LG)ABBA/OBP/Slgbb%ct% EyeHR/SB
2016Grand Junction (Pio)210.329/.366/.4906870.465/6
2017Asheville (SAL)254.350/.401/.5007830.436/5
2018Lancaster (Calif)454.333/.383/.4898770.4113/5
Comments: Professional hitter has an advanced approach at the plate. Good pitch recognition and bat speed allows him to barrel balls consistently to all fields. Above-average defender at 3B with soft hands, good lateral movement and a strong arm. After two seasons owns a slash line of .341/.385/.496.

Development Path: Missed two months of action with a groin injury but showed enough to warrant a jump to the hitter-friendly CAL in 2018.

Fantasy Impact: Welker has nice offensive upside and should be able to hit for average and power. Speed isn't going to be part of his game, but early overall returns are positive.

Upside Grade: 8C


5. Ryan Castellani (RHP) ... 6-4, 195 ... 22 ... 2014 (2) HS (AZ)
YearTeam (LG)IPERAWHIPCtlDomCmdOppBA
2014Tri-City (Nwst)37.03.651.1902.26.12.8.240
2015Asheville (SAL)113.14.451.4402.37.53.3.283
2016Modesto (Calif)167.23.811.2302.77.62.8.237
2017Hartford (East)157.14.811.3302.77.62.8.257
2018Hartford (East)134.15.491.5304.76.11.3.251
Comments: Hard-throwing righty took a step back at Double-A, but remains an impact prospect. FB now sits at 92-95, topping at 97 mph with good, late sink. Left too many balls up in the zone, resulting in 16 HR allowed. SL and CU are both above-average and give him the tools to be a solid #3 starter.

Development Path: Showed enough in 27 Double-A starts to move up to Triple-A Albuquerque where he needs to work on keeping his plus sinker down in the zone.

Fantasy Impact: Profiles as a low-end #3 starter with the typical Coors Field caveats. The Rockies have, however, done well with pitchers with similar stuff so he might be worth a gamble in deep NL-only keeper leagues.

Upside Grade: 8C


6. Peter Lambert (RHP) ... 6-2, 185 ... 20 ... 2015 (2) HS (CA)
YearTeam (LG)IPERAWHIPCtlDomCmdOppBA
2015Grand Junction (Pio)31.13.451.2803.27.52.3.236
2016Asheville (SAL)126.03.931.2502.47.73.2.249
2017Lancaster (Calif)142.14.171.2401.98.34.4.256
2018Hartford (East)92.22.230.9901.27.36.1.223
2018Albuquerque (PCL)55.15.041.5702.45.02.1.303
Comments: Survived a full season at hitter-friendly Lancaster (CAL), where he served up 18 HR, but posted a great 30 BB/131 K ratio. Velocity up a tick from when he was drafted and FB now sits at 92-95, topping at 97 mph. CB and CU both play well and he locates all three well, keeping the ball down in the zone.

Development Path: Look for a breakout from Lambert when he moves up to Double-A Hartford. His Ctl and Dom are trending in the right direction.

Fantasy Impact: Showed both the stuff and mental toughness to pitch well in Coors and still has a bit of room for projection. Solid #3 starter profile.

Upside Grade: 8C


7. Ryan Vilade (SS) ... 6-2, 190 ... R/R ... 19 ... 2017 (2) HS (TX)
YearTeam (LG)ABBA/OBP/Slgbb%ct% EyeHR/SB
2017Grand Junction (Pio)117.308/.438/.49619740.875/5
2018Asheville (SAL)457.274/.353/.36810790.515/17
Comments: Strong, physically mature prepster has quick bat and raw power give him 20+ HR potential. Has an advanced approach at the plate, but struggles with high-end velocity. Plus arm and soft hands, but below-average range make a move from SS to 3B likely. Raw power and ability to make hard contact will be his ticket to the show.

Development Path: Vilade had an impressive pro debut and will head out to full-season ball at Low-A Asheville. He played SS exclusively in his debut and will stick there for now, but look for him to get reps at 2B and/or 3B as well.

Fantasy Impact: Another potential impact 3B bat for the Rockies. Has the size and plate discipline to hit for power and average and is worth a roster speed in deep dynasty leagues.

Upside Grade: 8D


8. Garrett Hampson (2B,SS) ... 6-0, 165 ... R/R ... 23 ... 2016 (3) Long Beach State University
YearTeam (LG)ABBA/OBP/Slgbb%ct% EyeHR/SB
2016Long Beach State (BigWe)245.306/.391/.40011840.742/23
2017Lancaster (Calif)533.326/.387/.46210860.738/51
2018Hartford (East)148.304/.391/.46612891.244/19
2018Albuquerque (PCL)296.314/.377/.4599800.526/17
2018Colorado (NL)40.275/.396/.40015700.580/2
Comments: Speedy, athletic player with an advanced hit tool and plus speed. Patient at the plate and barrels the ball consistently. Split time between SS and 2B and has the arm to play either spot. 51 SB were tops in the system.

Development Path: Hampson will move up to Double-A Hartford. His advanced approach at the plate should serve him well, but in today's game he needs to show more power outside the California League to force his way into the Rockies long-term plans.

Fantasy Impact: He's a couple years out, but plus speed and hit tool give Hampson significant fantasy appeal. He scored 113 runs in just 127 games.

Upside Grade: 8C


9. Yency Almonte (RHP) ... 6-3, 185 ... 23 ... 2012 (17) HS (FL)
YearTeam (LG)IPERAWHIPCtlDomCmdOppBA
2016Modesto (Calif)138.13.711.1802.58.73.5.230
2017Hartford (East)76.12.001.1703.78.42.3.202
2017Albuquerque (PCL)35.04.891.7705.45.71.1.281
2018Albuquerque (PCL)43.25.561.3302.97.02.4.251
2018Colorado (NL)14.21.841.3002.58.63.4.254
Comments: Strong-armed right-hander has had back-to-back productive seasons and should make his MLB debut in 2018. Plus mid-90s heater tops out at 98 mph along with a hard SL and improved CU. Two stints on the DL with arm fatigue raise concerns about durability and a move to relief would not be a surprise.

Development Path: Almonte scuffled when moved up to Triple-A Albuquerque as his Cmd plunged. He will head back to Triple-A to start 2018, but should find his way to Coors Field by mid-season, either as a spot starter or in relief.

Fantasy Impact: Almonte's future value is tied up in his role. As a starter with fringe control he's a risky proposition and could have more value in relief.

Upside Grade: 7C


10. Tom Murphy (C) ... 6-1, 200 ... R/R ... 27 ... 2012 (3) University at Buffalo
YearTeam (LG)ABBA/OBP/Slgbb%ct% EyeHR/SB
2016Albuquerque (PCL)303.327/.361/.6475740.2119/1
2017Albuquerque (PCL)141.255/.312/.4266600.164/0
2017Colorado (NL)24.042/.115/.0838630.220/0
2018Albuquerque (PCL)236.258/.333/.5689680.2917/4
2018Colorado (NL)93.226/.250/.3873530.072/0
Comments: Offensive-minded backstop was on the verge of extended action in the majors when he broke his arm in spring training. Was out of action until mid-June and then never found his rhythm. Still has plus raw power and a track-record of hitting for average, though his ct% remains a red flag. Should get another shot in 2018.

Development Path: Murphy is currently slated to split time with light-hitting T. Wolters in COL. He will need to show more on both sides of the ball, but his plus power gives him potential value.

Fantasy Impact: Catchers with plus power are not easy to come by, making Murphy an excellent target in NL-only formats, but he remains high-risk/high-reward.

Upside Grade: 7C


11. Sam Howard (LHP) ... 6-3, 170 ... 25 ... 2014 (3) Georgia Southern University
YearTeam (LG)IPERAWHIPCtlDomCmdOppBA
2016Modesto (Calif)65.22.471.0203.310.03.0.179
2017Hartford (East)46.12.330.8801.97.84.1.182
2017Albuquerque (PCL)81.03.891.4203.77.11.9.252
2018Albuquerque (PCL)96.05.061.4603.27.52.3.269
2018Colorado (NL)4.02.252.0006.82.30.3.294
Comments: Projectable lefty is starting to tap into his potential. Fastball now sits at 91-94 topping at 96 mph with heavy late sink. Slider is average and change-up is deadly vs LHB (0.82 ERA vs. LHB at AA). Not overpowering, but a consistent strike thrower with good deception and plenty of ground ball outs,

Development Path: Howard continues to fly under the radar and has to be considered a dark horse candidate for a spot at the backend of the Rockies rotation in 2018.

Fantasy Impact: Command and control lefties tend to have limited fantasy potential, but Howard does have a good sinker and throws plenty of strikes, which should help keep him out of trouble.

Upside Grade: 7C


12. Tyler Nevin (1B,3B) ... 6-4, 200 ... R/R ... 20 ... 2015 (1) HS (CA)
YearTeam (LG)ABBA/OBP/Slgbb%ct% EyeHR/SB
2015Grand Junction (Pio)189.265/.368/.38613780.692/3
2016Boise (Nwst)11.000/1.000/2.000010000/0
2017Boise (Nwst)30.233/.233/.4330700.001/0
2017Asheville (SAL)298.305/.364/.4568810.487/10
2018Lancaster (Calif)378.328/.386/.5038800.4413/4
Comments: Son of former big leaguer Phil Nevin, his injuries have limited him to just 328 AB over the last two seasons. When healthy, Nevin has good bat speed and above-average power. He's a solid if not spectacular defender, but long-term fits better at 1B, especially in Colorado.

Development Path: Despite being limited to just 82 games in 2017, Nevin will likely head to High-A Lancaster where he should put up impressive numbers. Given the organizational depth at 3B, he will need to work hard to stick at the hot corner.

Fantasy Impact: Nevin has the size and bat speed to develop above-average power, but his lack of speed and fringe defense might push him to 1B where he has to rake to play.

Upside Grade: 8D


13. Sam Hilliard (OF) ... 6-5, 225 ... L/L ... 24 ... 2015 (15) Wichita State
YearTeam (LG)ABBA/OBP/Slgbb%ct% EyeHR/SB
2015Wichita State (MVC)218.335/.395/.4919790.488/9
2015Grand Junction (Pio)222.306/.397/.53214750.657/12
2016Asheville (SAL)461.267/.348/.44911670.3717/30
2017Lancaster (Calif)536.300/.360/.4879710.3221/37
2018Hartford (East)435.262/.327/.3899650.279/23
Comments: Former 15th rounder had a breakout season, putting up big HR/SB numbers. Huge left-handed hitter has plus raw power and athleticism with 20/20 potential. Moves well in the OF with a plus arm and a was two-way player at Wichita State. Some swing and miss; will need to prove he can hit for average as he moves up.

Development Path: Hilliard will move to Double-A Hartford in 2018 where he will be hard pressed to duplicate his production from last year. Making more consistent contact will be the first order of business.

Fantasy Impact: The plus raw power and speed is undeniable. If Hilliard can hit .270+ in the show, he could be hidden fantasy gold, though he'll need to make better contact.

Upside Grade: 8D


14. Dom Nunez (C) ... 6-0, 170 ... L/R ... 23 ... 2013 (6) HS (CA)
YearTeam (LG)ABBA/OBP/Slgbb%ct% EyeHR/SB
2014Grand Junction (Pio)176.312/.384/.51711840.758/5
2015Asheville (SAL)373.282/.373/.44812850.9613/7
2016Modesto (Calif)390.241/.321/.36211770.5410/8
2017Hartford (East)297.202/.335/.35415720.6411/7
2018Hartford (East)324.222/.320/.34312770.639/8
Comments: Solid defensive backstop has as strong arm and moves well behind the plate, but poor footwork leads to too many passed balls. Regressed at the plate, with a career-low .689 OPS, which raises concerns about his ability to be a full-time regular.

Development Path: Nunez will likely be asked to repeat at Double-A Hartford. Will need to prove that he can to retain his prospect status, but for now the Rockies still believe in his LH bat.

Fantasy Impact: Nunez is overall a good defender, and calls a good game, but his career .247/.338/.396 line limits his fantasy appeal.

Upside Grade: 7D


15. Jordan Patterson (OF) ... 6-4, 200 ... L/L ... 26 ... 2013 (4) University of South Alabama
YearTeam (LG)ABBA/OBP/Slgbb%ct% EyeHR/SB
2015Modesto (Calif)303.304/.378/.5686710.2210/9
2016Albuquerque (PCL)427.293/.376/.48010720.4014/10
2016Colorado (NL)18.444/.474/.5005941.000/0
2017Albuquerque (PCL)484.283/.348/.5397740.2826/3
2018Albuquerque (PCL)413.271/.367/.5259690.3326/6
Comments: Professional hitter continues to put up impressive numbers in hitter-friendly parks, but lacks the speed and athleticism to win a starting role. Quick left-handed bat combined with aggressive approach resulted in 65 extra base hits but also a lot of strikeouts.

Development Path: Patterson will once again compete for bench role with the Rockies in 2018. He's done everything he can to put himself in position for big league playing time, but other than being a LHH he doesn't standout in this organization. A trade could be for the best.

Fantasy Impact: Patterson has the tools to hit .270 with 20+ HR in the majors, but he's a fantasy afterthought until he gets regular playing time.

Upside Grade: 7C


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