Tuesday Rockpile: Nothing Else Matters - Youth Must Develop

Peter G. Aiken-US PRESSWIRE

Forget manager Walt Weiss and his one year contract. Forget whoever replaces Rich Dauer in the third base coach box. Forget what role Todd Helton and Jason Giambi will have in 2013. Forget about Josh Roenicke leaving on waivers. Forget even about the 4-man rotation experiment. None of these things are likely to make a large impact in the performance of the Rockies in the future.

It is simple. The Rockies' organization is filled with youth, and success will only come if that youth was correctly identified inititally, and if that youth develops to help. Wilin Rosario has shown signs of being in the positive column in those terms, finishing fourth in the Rookie of the Year voting yesterday. He still has a lot of development remaining, as I discuss later today.

Patrick Saunders has run an expansive series over the past two days, this morning looking at how critical it is that Colorado gets some progress from their young rotation. Yesterday, he outlined some of the potential that remains in the lineup.

Naturally, the youth pipeline doesn't stop with the 25 or even 40-man roster. Yesterday, Baseball Prospectus released its first post-Goldstein Top 10 Rockies prospect list. While the PuRPs list tends to favor statistics in its vote more, BPro uses several scouting contacts to refine their list. Regardless, the lists came out very comparable, with 9 names appearing on both.

BPro Purple Row
1 Trevor Story David Dahl
2 David Dahl Nolan Arenado
3 Nolan Arenado Trevor Story
4 Tyler Matzek Kyle Parker
5 Will Swanner Will Swanner
6 Chad Bettis Chad Bettis
7 Tyler Anderson Corey Dickerson
8 Kyle Parker Tyler Anderson
9 Jayson Aquino Rafael Ortega
10 Rafael Ortega Tyler Matzek
14 Jayson Aquino

There are three notable exceptions. Whereas Purple Row voters pushed David Dahl to the top spot (barely), the BPro vote gave Story the top spot. In the subscriber write-up, Jason Parks wrote that both project to be 1st division starters arriving in 2015, but that Dahl had better tools, a higher ceiling and only slightly more risk. This led to second thoughts, with the staff discussing who deserves to be #1. The staff was split down the middle.

Second, Rowbots have wearied of Tyler Matzek's inconsistency and are having huge doubts he ever puts it together. Those at BPro say his scouting reports are excellent in that he can flash four plus pitches and has simple, efficient mechanics. As he got more hittable in Modesto, these things seemed to be in doubt for PuRP voters. The release point inconsistency may never be fixed, but don't doubt his sky-high ceiling.

Lastly, Rowbots were smitten by Corey Dickerson's continued dominance in AA after an MVP-like first half in Modesto. He did not rank on BPro's list, as he is seen as a platoon outfielder at best and is poor defensively. Jayson Aquino's presence at #9 is a surprise, as I had heard reports of a subpar fastball, but Parks' sources indicate it is a "lively" pitch reaching the lower 90's. He's a long way off, but positive scouting reports are good.

The top three spots on this list are projected to be above average MLB starters by 2015. If that development turns out, it will impact the Rockies' chances far more than anything Walt Weiss can do.

Rockies Mailbag: Walt Weiss' one-year deal, does it lack confidence? - The Denver Post - Saundesr answers angry fans again.

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