Monday Rockpile: The Pebbles Are Coming to Denver

It's that time again for the Rockies to host their winter development program in Denver. They conduct a full program every other year for the top prospects in the organization. Though not every player attending has been announced yet, Mark Gustafson mentioned a few names:

We haven't set everything yet, but we'll have players like [pitcher] Shane Lindsay, [infielder/outfielder] Eric Young Jr., [infielder] Chris Nelson, [shortstop] Hector Gomez and [pitcher] Jhoulys Chacin."

The last time the Rockies hosted their full winter dvelopment program, twenty-four players were invited. Here's a look at who went and how they've fared after it (highest-level reached so far):

Player 2008 Level
Darren Clarke, P Tulsa, 5.40 ERA in 29 G  (2 games with Rockies in '07).
Samuel Deduno, P Missed season, would have been with Tulsa.
Ching-Lung Lo, P 5.25 ERA, 1.28 WHIP with Tulsa.
Franklin Morales, P Started 2008 with the Rockies, but returned to the Springs at the end of April.
Josh Newman, P Spent May with the Rockies and wound up with the Royals midway through the season.

Steven Register, P

Spent September with the Rockies--and it wasn't memorable. Drafted by the Mets in 2007 Rule 5 draft before being returned.
Greg Reynolds, P Spent 2008 between the Springs (no so good) and the Rockies (a disaster).
Chaz Roe, P After an injury to start 2008, Roe spent three games with Modesto before moving on to Tulsa: 4.27 ERA, 1.25 ERA.
Ryan Speier, P Speier was the guy usually sent back to the minors when the Rockies made a move in 2008. 113 ERA+.
Josh Sullivan, P Sullivan's been beset by injuries ever since he joined the Rockies. Pitched for Asheville in 2007, but spent 2008 with Tri-City (3 games).
Rick Guarno, C Had an .812 OPS with Tulsa, struggled upon promotion to the Springs.
Chris Iannetta, C Our starting catcher, eventually, in 2008 and going forward.
Michael McKenry, C .828 OPS in Cal League was third-best for catcher, 18 homers second-best. Strong performance in the AFL.
Joe Koshansky, 1B Saw really limited time with the Rockies, but hit well for Colorado Springs. Likely needs a ticket out of the Colorado organization to have a real chances at the majors.
Chris Nelson, SS Had a down season for Tulsa, but the potential is still there.
Ian Stewart, 3B Starting 3rd baseman by the end of the season, but has no position with the Rockies as of now.
Troy Tulowitzki, SS 2007 NL RoY runner-up experienced a letdown in 2008, but saw things get better as the season wound down. More of 2007 than 2008 in the future.
Jason Van Kooten, INF .651 OPS in hitter-friendly Cal League.
Dexter Fowler, OF .946 OPS with Tulsa, played in the Olympics, and then spent with the Rockies. Future certainly looks bright.
Joe Gaetti, OF Spent most on 2008 in the Oakland organization, played one game for Minnesota's Doulbe-A team,and is now a free agent.
Matt Miller, OF Like Guarno, he spent most of 2008 with Tulsa (.877 OPS). Unlike Guarno, Miller didn't struggle upon promotion (.854 OPS). Lack of power and age hold him back.
Seth Smith, OF Eli Manning's former backup repeated Colorado Springs to start the season, but part of the first half and all of the second half with the Rockies.
Corey Wimberly, Util Spent 2008 with Tulsa, a repeat year. .291/.370/.345 compared to 2007's .268/.323/.348.
Eric Young, Jr., Util Spent all of 2008 with Tulsa (.290/.391/.392, 46 SB)

Several hits, a few misses, and the rest are still waiting for a chance. Three of them (Iannetta, Stewart, and Tulowitzki) will be with the Rockies for years to come. Fowler should have his name added to that list, and we'd all like to see Morales and Reynolds overcome their troubles.

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