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Rockies select several contracts in advance of Rule-5 draft

The Rockies protected five prospects from the upcoming Rule-5 draft.

Ahead of today’s 4:00 MT deadline, the Colorado Rockies announced they have selected the contracts of five minor league players in order to protect them from the upcoming Rule-5 draft. The Rockies now have 38 players on their 40-man roster.

3B Warming Bernabel started his season with the Low-A Fresno Grizzlies. In 65 games he slashed .317/.390/.504 with ten home runs and 54 RBI. The Rockies’ no. 8 organizational prospect, Bernabel was promoted to the High-A Spokane Indians and continued to hit well. In 26 games with Spokane he hit .305/.315/.486 with another four home runs. The Rockies sent Bernabel to the Arizona Fall League, where he struggled immensely at the plate with the Salt River Rafters. In 54 at-bats he had an OPS of just .340 out in Arizona.

RHP Blair Calvo isn’t currently ranked in the Rockies’ top 30 for prospects, but had a very strong season out of the bullpen for the Double-A Hartford Yard Goats. In 29 appearances Calvo posted a 3.09 ERA with a 1.257 WHIP. He struck out 47 batters while walking just 11 and only gave up one two home runs. In the Arizona Fall League he had an ERA of 14.00 through ten appearances. He got hit around a lot with 18 total hits but he didn’t give up any home runs. Calvo has a whippy arm action with a fastball sitting 95-97 MPH and a strong slider.

SS Julio Carreras ranked just outside of our top 30 for midseason PuRPs rankings. Carreras started the season with the High-A Spokane Indians and played well to the tune of a .289/.352/.473 line with 11 home runs over 100 games. Carreras earned a late season promotion to the Double-A Hartford Yard Goats, where he did struggle somewhat to adjust. In 60 at-bats he hit just .233/.303/.350 without a home run. Carreras spent most of 2022 as a shortstop, but he could potentially move to third base as his career progresses. He is currently playing in the Dominican Winter League with the Los Gigantes del Cibao.

OF Brenton Doyle (no. 25 PuRP) is one of many promising outfielders in the Rockies farm system and is ranked no. 21 organizationally. Doyle has strong fielding tools including a 60-grade at speed, arm, and fielding. He can also back things up with a 55 power and 45 hit tool. Doyle earned an MiLB gold glove for his defensive work in 2021 and has primarily worked in center field. Doyle played most of the 2022 season with the Double-A Hartford Yard Goats. Over 123 games he hit .246/.287/.450 with 23 home runs and 68 RsBI, and sprinkled in 23 stolen bases to go along with the bop. After being promoted to Triple-A Albuquerque late in the year, Doyle had an OPS of 1.241 with three home runs over just nine games.

RHP Riley Pint has come a long way in a year. From retired and out of baseball to back in the team’s fold and potentially on the precipice of his big league debut. Pint started the 2022 season with the Double-A Hartford Yard Goats, the highest level of play he had seen since being drafted in the first round of the 2016 MLB draft. In Hartford he put together his longest and most successful season of professional baseball. Over 42 23 innings and 38 appearances Pint struck out 55 batters and posted a 4.85 ERA. Control was still somewhat of an issue as he walked 29 batters and hit eight of them. Pint was promoted to the Triple-A Albuquerque Isotopes in August and made three appearances with one earned run give up and three strikeouts. He was unfortunately placed in the 7-day IL late in August with a forearm strain and would not pitch again in 2022. The Rockies likely chose to protect Pint—a pending minor league free agent—because they believe he is closing in on big league readiness and don’t want another organization to poach him.

There are notable snubs from Rule-5 protection. RHP Karl Kauffmann (no. 18 PuRP) ended his season in Triple-A and is potential pitching depth on a roster that sorely needs it. No. 25 organizational prospect 3B Aaron Schunk was left off despite an overall solid season in Double-A. The most glaring omission from the Rockies’ protections is first baseman Grant Lavigne (no. 19 PuRP), who played well in High-A Spokane and Double-A Hartford and turned heads in the Arizona Fall League. Lavigne hit .328/.409/.557 with the Salt River Rafters and was named an AFL “Fall-Star” for their All-Star Game rosters.

The Rule-5 draft will take place on December 7th during this year’s Winter Meetings. We will see which unprotected players are taken from the Rockies and see how these prospects fare after being added to the 40-man roster.