Alexis Rios Prospect Retro
Alexis Rios was drafted by the Toronto Blue Jays in the first round in 1999, out of
Rios split 2000 between
Rios spent all of 2001 with
The Jays moved him up to
Rios moved up to Double-A in 2003 and had an excellent season, hitting .352/.402/.521, setting career highs in everything except steals. He hit 32 doubles, 11 triples, 11 homers, and as I wrote in the 2004 book, he “made me look like an idiot by battering Eastern League pitching.” I wrote that a lot of his value was tied up in his batting average, and that “if he’s hitting .300, that’s fine, but if he drops down to .260, it will be a problem. Rios has been over .300 for two years now, and it’s looking less like a fluke and more like real progress. His power is coming around, and while his walk rate isn’t great, scouts say he’s made progress reading the strike zone.” I also noted his improved defensive skills and strong arm, and gave him a Grade B+.
Rios spent most of 2004 in the majors, hitting .286/.338/.383 for
Comparable players to Rios according to Sim Score:
Even the worst of these guys was useful.
Rios is a case study of a raw player with tools who turned them into skills. In his case, even when he was struggling in the low minors, the fact that he kept his strikeout rate under control was a positive marker. He needed help with the zone and with getting his swing in gear, but he wasn’t flailing wildly and piling up the whiffs. If you’re looking at raw tools guys, and trying to figure out which ones could make it, look for the guys with the low strikeout rates, even if they aren’t drawing walks yet.