Among the non-roster invitees announced by the Rockies yesterday, Ryan Castellani (PuRP no. 9) was probably one of the least expected. Still only 20 years old, Castellani is expected to start 2017 pitching for Double-A Hartford, which does put him well withing reach of a MLB debut this year if the Rockies needed him to. After pitching 167 ⅔ innings last year, Castellani won’t have the same inning restrictions that Jon Gray and Jeff Hoffman have had after making a quick ascension through the minors.
Riley Pint checks in at the very top of this list. His electric fastball, advanced changeup and combination of breaking pitches is unparalleled by anyone else in the Rockies farm system. His ability to control and command those pitches will be the determining factor in how fast Pint rises through the Rockies system.
Keith Law has wrapped up his annual preseason prospect rankings by publishing his sleeper picks. For the Rockies he picks someone who may actually need regular naps since he could quite possibly be three small children stacked on top of one another.
We’ve spent a lot of time talking about the Eddie Butler trade (it takes a while to get over one who had such a prominent place in one’s heart), but entertain one more article. After watching Butler struggle so much for the Rockies, it’s sometimes hard to remember that there is still a path to him being successful. Eno Sarris lays out that case here. Fine, as long as he doesn’t become the next Jake Arrieta.
While Reynolds was signed to a minor-league deal, the consensus is that he will be a part of the 2017 Rockies. As a veteran right-handed bat that can play plus defense at first base, Reynolds could allow Ian Desmond to be the injury replacement for any of the Rockies other infielders as well as give one of the left-handed outfielders a day off against a tough lefty.
One more FanGraphs link for today. Interesting read from Jeff Sullivan on how teams have rated out on defense recently and how they’re projected in 2017. The Rockies don’t get any special mention, since they don’t exist on the extremes observed in the title. But pay attention to where they show up in the graphs.