Colorado Rockies Ranking the 40-Man Roster: 15-11
We continue our look at the Colorado Rockies 40 man roster today by ranking numbers 15 through 11. These players are expected to be huge contributors to the team this year. Fitting for the current state of spring training, this edition consists of pitchers and catchers. Let’s get into it…
Tom Murphy: Catcher Points: 89 Highest Rank: 11 Lowest Rank: 18
Murphy is a 25-year-old drafted in the third round of the 2012 draft from the University of Buffalo. He has been considered the catcher of the future for the Rockies since being drafted. He has spent most of the past two seasons in Triple-A but has been called up following the roster expansion in both 2015 and 2016.
The focus of his time in the minors has been working on his skills as a receiver and abilities on the defensive side of the ball. His bat has always spoken for itself, hitting .327/.361/.647 with the Isotopes last year. He launched 19 bombs in 80 games to go along with 26 doubles. Murphy started slow in May and June hitting under .300, but caught fire in July hitting a ridiculous .591 at the plate and didn’t slow down for the rest of the year even after being called up.
Murphy joined the Rockies in September and totaled 49 plate appearances. In this small sample size Murphy slashed .273/.347/.659 and hit five home runs, showing his offense is ready for the majors.
The big question for Murphy this year will be how he handles the young pitching staff for the Rockies. If he can prove an average defender, he could win the starting catcher job, and at minimum will split games with Tony Wolters. Murphy could also see sometime as a pinch hitter late in games or receive a couple starts at first base this year in an attempt to get him as many at bats as possible.
My prediction is he will start about 70 games at catcher and eclipse 15 home runs with a batting average in the .280s.