Future Colorado Rockies: Modesto Nuts July 2 Update


Modesto Nuts logo [Image via Twitter/@Rockies]The Modesto Nuts — the Colorado Rockies’ Class-A Advanced Affiliate in the California League — have some exciting young prospects to follow this year.

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The Colorado Rockies’ class A advanced affiliate in the California League, the Modesto Nuts, is stock full of good prospects. And, in the ever unpredictable and hitter-friendly California League, the club has been a good draw so far this season and an exciting affiliate long-term for the Rockies (they’ve been an affiliate of the Rox since 2005).

As we’ve been doing with other minor league clubs — and as we will continue to do all season — let’s take a look at the last week for the Nuts, as well as a few players to keep an eye on in high class A this summer.

The last week (5-1): The Nuts are fresh off the California League All Star Game, and are 5-1 in the second half, winning everything against the San Jose Giants and Bakersfield Blaze except for a one-run loss last Saturday to San Jose. The Nuts are pitching pretty well lately, allowing 20 runs in those six games, and the hot start is giving them the upper hand on the second half, though it’s obviously still very early to be worried about the standings post-All Star break.

The Nuts went 33-37 in the first half, finishing nine games back, and are now 38-39 overall with a very real chance at doing some damage in the second half (the other good club in the North division of the California League is the Visalia Rawhide; they were 42-28 in the first half and also began the second half at 5-1).

Trending up (Harrison Musgrave): We’ve written about Musgrave before on this site, and it’s apparent that nobody told him the California League is a hitter’s paradise. In 15 starts now, he is 10-1 with a 2.76 ERA and a 1.09 WHIP, and in his last ten starts, he’s gone 6-0 with a 2.58 ERA and 56 strikeouts in 59.1 innings.

Musgrave is 2-0 in the second half of the season, already tossing 12 innings while giving up just one run — and no walks — in his two starts over the last week (both Nuts’ victories, of course). The 8th round pick in the 2014 draft and West Virginia University product is fast making himself into a prospect for the Rockies, and at just 23 years old, may be angling for a call-up to AA New Britain before the year is over.

Trending down (Rosell Herrera): The 22-year-old Dominican turned some heads in 2013 when he slashed .343/.419/.515 in 472 ABs in Asheville in 2013, but 2015 marks the second year that Rosell Herrera has yet to find success as the next level on the minor league ladder.

Slashing just .236/.297/.332 with 56 strikeouts against just 23 walks in 259 ABs, Herrera is struggling once again in Modesto after slashing near identical numbers in a near identical sample size in 2014.

Herrera flashed both speed and power in Asheville, hitting 33 doubles and 16 home runs while stealing 21 bases in 126 games, and while there were some red flags (he struck out 96 times in those 472 ABs), a .419 on-base percentage in a full-season minor league is no joke. It remains to be seen if Herrera, an outfielder, will figure out Modesto over the rest of this year, though, in his second go-around.

One to watch (Ryan McMahon): There are certainly several choices that could have been made here (Jordan Patterson? Raimel Tapia?) but McMahon as impressed as a 20-year-old third baseman in 2015, slashing .293/.379/.485 with 27 doubles and seven home runs in 270 at-bats. This follows solid seasons at Grand Junction in 2013, and Asheville in 2014, and it’d stand that McMahon will see New Britain (er, Hartford) in 2016, barring an injury or something. That’s a fast and consistent track for a young prospect (the Rockies’ 2013 second round pick), and he bears watching as he’ll soon make the Rockies ask: what do we do with this guy and Nolan Arenado?

Quick hits: Take it from somebody who lives in California (me!), nobody is playing day games in crazy high desert heat; the Nuts play every single July game at 7:05 pm or later (Bakersfield, unusually hot during July even for the desert, enjoys 7:45 pm starts). That’s right — no day games the entire month of July. … McMahon is young, but he’s not the youngest on the roster. That award goes to Antonio Senzatela, a pitcher born in January, 1995. … Herrera is the only member of the Nuts who is on the Rockies’ 40-man roster. … Omar Quintanilla got four at-bats in Modesto earlier this year as he tries to continue his career and work back to the big leagues. … Correlle Prime leads the club in home runs with eight, while McMahon and Tapia each have seven and Patterson has hit six. … Aside from Musgrave, Senzatela is having a solid season too, with a 1.02 WHIP and a 2.36 ERA in ten starts, striking out 71 in 72.1 innings. … After Carlos Estevez was promoted to AA New Britain a few weeks ago, the Nuts have gone closer by committee: Matt Carasiti, Trent Daniel, Troy Neiman and Rayan Gonzalez.


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