The Lancaster JetHawks, the Rockies new High-A affiliate in the California League, announced their Opening Day roster. Significantly, Forrest Wall will be repeating the level. As Jeff Aberle noted in his PuRP review of Wall, a meager slash line of .264/.329/.355 at his old High-A home of Modesto probably won’t cut it, especially for a bat-first prospect with shaky defense. On the bright side, there was a time that Nolan Arenado was also a bat-first prospect with shaky defense. However, I should also note that Josh Vitters had a similar reputation and if you haven’t heard of him, well, that’s the point.
Chalk up another writer who thinks the Rockies will be a good team this year. I found it funny that a team that lost its starting first baseman, its starting left fielder and a starting pitcher are getting more hype now than they did before spring training started.
Patrick Saunders gives readers an idea of some of the observations he’s had this spring. He mentions that April will be a rough month with an understrength Rockies roster playing five games against the Dodgers, seven against the Giants and four against the Nationals. He also doesn’t think Carlos Gonzalez will sign a new, long-term deal. That could make the trade deadline tricky if the Rockies are trailing by a handful of games in the wild card chase. If that’s the circumstance and he does get traded, it may be a matter of retooling to get some value instead of a white flag waving.