Recently MLB.com released its list of the top 100 prospects in baseball. Three Rockies made the list: outfielder David Dahl, third baseman Nolan Arenado, and shortstop Trevor Story. Yes, that means no pitchers in the Rockies system cracked the list. That is disheartening only in the sense that it would have been a nice little boost to have a pitching prospect to get excited about.
As much as anything else, this list raises interesting questions about how we assess young players and just how nebulous the “prospect” word is. Consider the fact that Dahl is ranked ahead of Arenado on this list. Does that mean Arenado is a less impressive prospect or that his ceiling isn’t as high because of one down season in the minor leagues? Isn’t Dahl’s higher ranking a reflection of how little we know about him as much as anything else? The more information we have, the more we have to pick apart, the more negative observations we make. To me, Arenado is still the prized prospect in the organization. I hope the blips from last season are just part of the process for him.
Does this mean Drew Pomeranz is no longer considered a prospect? We still don’t know that much about him. He may have just completed a full season with the Rockies, but that included multiple stints in the minor leagues and the 75 pitch limit experiment. Pomeranz had to take a step back to fix his delivery…something that happens to prospects. His innings will be monitored this season…like a prospect. This organization still does not know what they have in him or Tyler Chatwood or even Christian Friedrich. Their talent is still enough to get excited about, like the “prospects” that made the top 100 list. Or at least I think it should be.
It is nice to generate excitement about Dahl and Story. As I have said before, depth is depth, and the Rockies have a little bit of it with position players. But I am not discouraged by the lack of Rockies on the list because I believe there are still plenty of guys to get excited about. I believe that is true even if they are not considered “prospects” anymore as far as lists like these are concerned.