Even coming off of a two year stretch in which the Colorado Rockies got their hopes up and then subsequently got burned by a streaky, strikeout prone outfielder who was once a top prospect (looking at you, Tyler Colvin), this spring there will be a significant amount of intrigue surrounding new acquisition Drew Stubbs.
A first-round pick in 2006, Stubbs has spent his career touted as one of the guys who “has all the tools” but has never “put it all together,” “figured it out,” “taken the next step,” “gotten over the hump,” or (insert your cliche of choice here).
This is Stubbs’s second fresh start in as many years; he was traded to the Cleveland Indians last year as part of the Shin-Soo Choo deal. Patrick Saunders has a great piece on the Rockies’ newest outfielder in this morning’s Denver Post. He notes that the plan, for now, is to pencil Stubbs into the fourth outfielder spot.
“I have high hopes for Drew…For me, he’s got to come to our team and try to be the starting center fielder. That’s my opinion.
…I know they have talked about CarGo being our center fielder, but for me, I think we are a better team if Drew can grab that position and run with it. That way, we can leave Carlos in left.”
We have to navigate the layers of nuance that accompany this type of quote, especially in December. It probably won’t make waves, and it might be meant to light a fire under Stubbs as much as anything else. It is still interesting, though, to have Tulo be this upfront about an opinion that flies in the face of what the front office has been saying since the moment Dexter Fowler was traded to the Houston Astros.
I have quietly wondered to myself about Stubbs’s ability to win an everyday job in Spring Training. I did not, however, see that happening in center field. Come the spring, it will be interesting to see if Tulo or the front office is right about who should play out there.