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Prospect of the Day: Charlie Blackmon, OF, Colorado Rockies

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Charlie Blackmon (Getty)
 
Prospect of the Day: Charlie Blackmon, OF, Colorado Rockies
     The Colorado Rockies just promoted outfielder Charlie Blackmon from Triple-A Colorado Springs. This is a prospect who hasn't received a lot of attention on a national basis, but who is actually quite talented and who could contribute in the majors for a long time.

Blackmon was drafted in the second round by the Rockies in 2008, from Georgia Tech. He was mostly a pitcher as an amateur and didn't move to the mound full-time until 2007, so he's been rather raw for his age. Despite his inexperience, he hit .307/.370/.433 (with 30 steals) in the California League in 2009 and .297/.360/.484 (with 19 steals) in the Texas League in 2010. He was off to a fast start this year, hitting .337/.393/.572 with 10 homers and 12 steals in 243 at-bats for Colorado Springs before his promotion.
   
Blackmon is an above-average athlete with plus running speed and a solid throwing arm, though his lack of amateur experience still shows up sometimes in his running and throwing. He's already collected ten assists this year in right field, but has also made four errors. He has above average power in his 6-3, 200 pound frame, and has worked hard to iron out his swing mechanics. His swing was somewhat long when he came into pro ball but is shorter and more consistent now. His plate discipline is average, but he usually makes contact and isn't prone to excessive strikeouts.
    
Scouts have often seen Blackmon as a good fit as a fourth outfielder, given his speed and ability to play all three outfield positions, but he's developed enough with the bat that he could be a regular. Although I don't think he'll be a star, he should be a productive major leaguer, hitting for average and moderate power, picking up some stolen bases, and holding a roster spot for years to come.