Stockton, Calif. — Zac Veen has felt first-hand the pressure and expectations that come with being the top draft pick for the Colorado Rockies in 2020.
Drafted ninth overall in the midst of a pandemic and unable to go directly into professional organized baseball during a 2020 season unlike any before, the outfielder out of Spruce Creek High School in Port Orange, Fla., said he used the time when he couldn’t be playing to prepare for the day he stepped back on the diamond.
“I took it as a time to get bigger and stronger and faster because, when I get out here, I’m going to be playing against 22- and 23-year-olds, so I knew I had to catch up,” Veen told me as part of an exclusive interview you can find here.
Here is what Colorado Rockies prospect Zac Veen told us about his first season with the Fresno Grizzlies
In his first season of professional baseball, playing for the Low-A Fresno Grizzles, Veen has experienced the ups and downs that come along with the game. In a 18-0 win over the Stockton Ports on Thursday night, Veen had his best game in a Grizzlies uniform, going 4-for-4 with two home runs and six RBI. With his two walks on the night, he reached base in all six of his plate appearances. He also swiped a base, giving him 27 on the year, good enough for second in High-A West.
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Veen has gone deep three times in his last two games. It’s part of a hot stretch that follows on the heels of a 4-for-26 (.154) stint at the plate. Such is the nature of baseball with highs and lows throughout the season, but experiencing the lows and adapting to them are something that Veen said has been his biggest adjustment this year.
“I’ve never, I guess, failed this much in my life,” said Veen, who was named as Gatorade’s Florida Player of the Year for high school baseball in 2020 and is now listed as Colorado’s top overall prospect. “It took some getting used to, and I’ve learned how to bounce back.
“It’s just really learning how to stay positive and not really overthinking and just enjoy every day and let the stats come.”
You can hear more from Veen, as well as prospects Grant Lavigne, Drew Romo, and Colin Simpson, along with manager Robinson Cancel, as part of our podcast (which you can find below) where we visit with the Fresno Grizzlies and look back at some moments for the Rockies during the recent All-Star Game by clicking here.