Saturday Rockpile: The Wheeler in the Sky Keeps on Turning, CarGo Still Sore, More

WASHINGTON, DC - JULY 8: Outfielder Carlos Gonzalez #5 of the Colorado Rockies misses a catch in the ninth inning against the Washington Nationals at Nationals Park on July 8, 2011 in Washington, DC. The Colorado Rockies won, 3-2. (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)

Moss: Center fielder Wheeler on fast track - The Denver Post
Irv Moss more or less makes a case for Tim Wheeler to be considered as an option for a call-up this season. There have been a couple of fairly spirited arguments in recent Rockpiles about whether or not the Rockies should look at him as a viable replacement for a guy like Carlos Gonzalez if he were to be out an extended period of time, or whether or not it should have been him instead of Cole Garner that replaced Charlie Blackmon.

Moss covers the positives in his piece - 22 home runs, 15 stolen bases, and a batting average north of .300. On top of that, he gets on-base at a .399 clip and is slugging .600. However, Wheeler does have a couple of things working against him. Despite having decent L/R splits (1.080 vs. righties, but still a very respectable .842 vs. lefties), his walk and strikeout rates are much worse against southpaws. The Rockies don't need more platoon-type players on the big league roster right now. They also don't need more guys who strikeout at a Reynoldsian pace - something any player jumping from AA to the big leagues would have trouble with, let alone one who already displays a penchant for whiffing.

Simply put, nobody should be clamoring for Wheeler to get any sort of promotion at this point. Even just moving him up to Triple-A doesn't make any sense, as the Rox really need to see what they have in this guy, and putting him in psycho hitting environments against awful pitching won't help them accomplish that. For right now, Tulsa is the perfect place for Wheeler to continuing honing his skills. If he blows the lid off of the league and finishes with 40 homers, 30 steals, and an 1.000+ OPS, that bodes even better for Wheeler and the organization. There's no "wasted opportunity" here.

Twitter / @TroyRenck
In a maybe somewhat-related story, it sounds like CarGo might not be able to start tonight. Renck tweeted it (linked above), and Thomas Harding backed that sentiment in an MLB.com piece. Rough deal for the Rockies, as Troy Tulowitzki is returning to the lineup tonight. It looked like Gonzalez might have aggravated his wrist injury diving for a catch that he did not end up making last night. I don't know if that's the exact cause of the soreness that he experienced, but it probably has something to do with it. The All-Star break seems to be coming at a great time for CarGo.

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