Wednesday, March 6, 2013
Colorado Rockies Spring Training 2013
In Scottsdale's Salt River Fields, the Colorado Rockies are doing the same thing as every other major league team at this time of year. Most of the faces are familiar, however, there are some who are new to the mix. Regardless of whether they're new to the Rockies or not, everyone is trying their best to shine so they can earn a spot on the short roster.
Jeff Francis, a very familiar face to the Colorado Rockies' pitching crew, has been stellar during training. His pitching has been second to none, letting in zero runs in nine innings so far. According to Walt Weiss, the Rockies' new manager, "He's got a good changeup, which is really important, not only in our place, but in general." So far, so good for Jeff Francis.
A newbie to the team, Bobby Cassevah is trying to figure out how to fit in with the Colorado Rockies. Cassevah hails from the Angels' organization. After the Los Angeles team let the 27-year old sinkerballer go, the Rockies signed him to a Minor League contract. Since then, Cassevah has made 50 relief pitching appearances and boasts a 65.9% ground-ball ratio.
The numbers do tell, and his ground-ball ratio tells us he is ready for Coors Field. Bobby is currently competing to stay on the pitching roster, and is not picky about being in the bullpen if that's how he gets back into the Major Leagues.
Turning to the catcher position, Wilin Rosario is getting better and better during spring training. After a stellar rookie year where Wilin scored 28 homeruns, he is settling into his second year with the club. His hope this year is to surpass his record-breaking numbers last year and continue to excel. It's difficult to think that he can do better than setting the Colorado catching records for homers and RBIs during his rookie year, but Rosario is certainly willing to try.
In addition to getting better, Wilin Rosario is also looking forward to learning from Yorvit Torealba, who is back with the Rockies for a second time. Although Wilin continues to hone his catching skills, which were shaky last year, his offense makes him worth keeping. Rosario is still very young, which means he has plenty of time and space to grow.
Like Bobby Cassevah, Nolan Arenado is trying to find his spot on the Colorado Rockies roster. Arenado has done a great job so far in spring training, hitting homeruns in his first three games. This 21-year old player was the Rockies' No. 2 prospect is hitting .423 so far in Arizona.
As a third baseman, Arenado has his work cut out for him. He is competing against Chris Nelson, who ended last season with a .301 average. Knowing that he might not make it to the Major Leagues this year, he is committed to making his Triple-A career count.
After sitting out most of last year, the Rockies' first baseman is looking good. Despite his already rough start to the season with a DUI charge, Helton is eager and motivated to come back on top. For his first hit of the Cactus Season during spring training, Helton hit his first ball out of the field via a bounce, earning himself a ground-rule double. As Weiss mentioned, "It was vintage Helton."
With a few more weeks to go in spring training's Cactus League, there's no telling how the Colorado Rockies roster might shake out. Regardless of who is on the roster with Carlos Gonzales and Troy Tulowitzki, everyone will be watching the Rockies as they adjust to a new year with a new manager.