Continuing our 2011 Draft Reviews with the Colorado Rockies, we find a balanced draft with a college pitching emphasis in the middle rounds.
2011 MLB Draft: Colorado Rockies Review
1) Tyler Anderson, LHP, Oregon: Polished lefty with 90-93 fastball, plus slider, good changeup and curveball, throws strikes, knows how to pitch, won't need long in the minors.
1S) Trevor Story, SS, Texas HS: One of my favorite players in the draft, fine glove at shortstop with a cannon arm and a decent chance to be a solid hitter. Some questions about his swing mechanics.
2) Carl Thomore, OF, New Jersey HS: Cold-weather prep with strong power bat, excellent makeup, overcame a gruesome ankle injury to save his career.
3) Pete O'Brien, C, Bethune-Cookman: Strong throwing arm and excellent raw power are the positives, but his receiving needs more work and he won't hit for average.
4) Dillon Thomas, OF, Texas HS: Mediocre tools except for his bat, should hit for average with at least moderate power as he matures.
5) Taylor Featherston, SS, TCU: Hits for average, gets on base, has some power, has the tools needed for shortstop but not the reliability, at least so far. May end up at second base or a super-utility type.
6) Chris Jensen, RHP, San Diego: Solid college arm with low-90s fastball, slider, splitter. Back-end starter or relief type.
7) Harold Riggins, 1B, North Carolina State: College slugger, has problems with breaking pitches. Strikes me as a mild overdraft.
8) Roberto Padilla, LHP, San Jose State: Average 88-90 MPH heat, but mixes in outstanding changeup, good curve, throws strikes. Fourth/fifth starter type if his command holds up.
9) Ross Stripling, RHP, Texas A&M: 90 MPH fastball, good curveball, good changeup, throws strikes, successful in college. Another fourth/fifth starter or reliever. I like him.
10) Ben Hughes, RHP, St. Olaf College: Small-college guy but a big arm, 6-5, 230 pounds, works at 90-94, throws curve, splitter, changeup, significant sleeper.
OTHERS OF NOTE: OF Brian Humphries (14th round, Pepperdine), 1B Preston Tucker (16th round, Florida), RHP Jesse Meaux (19th round, UC Santa Barbara), RHP Patrick Johnson (25th round, North Carolina).
SUMMARY: This is a balanced draft at the top, I like the Anderson/Story/Thomore/O'Brien combination, mixing up positions, origins, and level of polish. Solid college players were the theme of the middle rounds, with a nice group of pitchers who have a chance to exceed expectations. A solid draft, not spectacular, but well-executed.