The Complete Fall 2011 PuRPs List

After revealing the PuRPs list five players at a time in six installments, it's time to wrap up the fall list by putting it all out at once. So without further ado, here is the full Fall 2011 Purple Row community prospect list:

Rank

Player

Points

1

Drew Pomeranz

1191

2

Nolan Arenado

1156

3

Wilin Rosario

1057

4

Chad Bettis

1022

5

Tyler Matzek

1000

6

Alex White

959

7

Kyle Parker

923

8

Tim Wheeler

922

9

Josh Rutledge

794

10

Charlie Blackmon

747

11

Rosell Herrera

724

12

Trevor Story

718

13

Edwar Cabrera

707

14

Tyler Anderson

692

15

Rafael Ortega

609

16

Peter Tago

599

17

Christian Friedrich

593

18

Joe Gardner

443

19

Corey Dickerson

431

20

Thomas Field

388

21

Will Swanner

376

22

Kent Matthes

365

23

Albert Campos

282

24

Jordan Pacheco

280

25

Cristhian Adames

205

26

Ben Paulsen

140

27

Joshua Slaats

123

28

David Kandilas

102

29

Jayson Aquino

101

30

Hector Gomez

95

40 ballots were cast in this edition of the PuRPs poll, with 30 points being granted for a first place vote, 29 for second, etc. Until a player was named on 13 ballots, his vote totals were modified on a sliding scale to avoid an individual ballot having too much say over the community forecast -- but none of the above players had that problem, as all thirty players on the PuRPs list were named on at least 14 ballots.

Some commentary follows after the fold.

It was a two horse race for first place in this edition of the PuRPs poll, between the top pitching and position prospects in the system. Drew Pomeranz took the top slot with 31 of the 40 first place votes, while Nolan Arenado was a pretty close second, with 8 first place votes. Behind those two, 3-5 were a clear tier, as were 6-8, 9-17, and 18-22 (all of which were named on at least 36 ballots). Looking back on past PuRPs lists, it certainly appears that Colorado's farm system is deeper than the last few editions, with the added bonus of potential star power at the top.

  • In all, 9 players were on every ballot, 64 players received at least one vote for this PuRPs list, 52 got mentioned on multiple ballots, 34 were named on at least 13 ballots (and therefore were unmodified), and 24 were named on at least 30 ballots, showing that the top 80% of the list was more or less agreed upon by the community, if not necessarily the order. Here is a link to the polling thread.
  • From last Spring's PuRPs list, three players were ineligible due to playing time -- Juan Nicasio (2), Rex Brothers (8), and Chris Nelson (13), while Bruce Billings (22) was traded during the season for Mark Ellis. In addition to those four players, five additional members of the last PuRPs list were bumped off of this edition: Casey Weathers (20), Eliezer Mesa (23), Cole Garner (26), Edgmer Escalona (29), and Mike Zuanich (30).
  • Those nine departures made plenty of room for members of the 2011 draft class (Trevor Story at 12, Tyler Anderson at 14), Latin America (Rosell Herrera at 11, Jayson Aquino at 29), US based clubs (Kent Matthes at 22, David Kandilas at 28), and most importantly, the players from the Ubaldo Jimenez trade (Pomeranz at 1, Alex White at 6, Joe Gardner at 18). Of the four new players who were in Colorado's system when the last poll took place, Herrera made the highest debut at 11.

Here are the five players who came closest to inclusion on the Fall 2011 PuRPs List:

35. Dan Houston (47.7 points, 10 ballots), 2008 7th round, RHP at Tulsa (will be 25 Opening Day)
34. Mike Zuanich (70 points points, 14 ballots), 2008 28th round, 1B at Modesto/Tulsa (25) 
33. Sam Mende (70 points, 15 ballots), 2011 31st round, SS/3B at Casper/Tri-City (22)
32. Dillon Thomas (77 points, 17 ballots), 2011 4th round, OF at Casper (19)
31. Edgmer Escalona (85 points, 16 ballots), 2004 FA (VZ), RHP at Colorado Springs/Rockies (22)

It's highly likely that of those 5 players only Escalona (who has an inside track at a bullpen spot in 2012) ever contributes at the major league level, but if there were a player to watch among the five in terms of a breakout season, it would be Dillon Thomas -- a toolsy young OF prospect who may repeat in a short season league in 2012. Both Houston and Zuanich are Rule 5 Draft eligible this off-season and are unlikely to be protected.

Breaking the list down by position, there are 12 pitchers (all of them starters, six are lefties, six are righties), 7 outfielders (2-4 of which could play CF), 6 middle infielders, 3 catchers, and 2 corner infielders. The position to watch next season for the minor league system is at middle infield, where most of those players have the ability to be stars at the Major League level.

It looks like there will be quite a wave of top prospects that will be MLB ready all in the next year or two, so it won't be long before we start seeing some of these guys producing for the Rockies. By my count, Colorado should have 8 of the top 10 ready for a big league call-up in 2012 or 2013, with 6-7 of the lower prospects on the list also making a MLB impact.

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