Colorado Rockies 2016 first round draft pick Riley Pint is coming out of retirement to rejoin the organization. He agreed to return earlier this week but an internal source with the Rockies confirmed the move to Rox Pile on Friday.
Pint, 24, retired from baseball in early June 2021 while he was pitching for the Spokane Indians (the High-A affiliate for the Rockies). He had struggled with injury and control issues throughout his career with the Rockies but Pint is going to try to make a second go of it.
Colorado Rockies prospect Riley Pint is returning to the organization
Riley Pint is returning to the Colorado Rockies and will likely be reporting to the Spokane Indians. Pint was with the Indians in 2021 before he decided to retire but both Spokane Indians pitching coach Ryan Kibler and then-Rockies assistant GM Zach Wilson left the door open for Pint’s return.
“I can’t really describe it any other way but to clear his head and get away from the pressure a little bit,” said Kibler in June. “Hopefully, the way I see it, (this) will give (him) a chance to reset.”
Pint was drafted by the Rockies with the 4th overall pick of the 2016 MLB Draft and throughout his career with the Rockies, he has struggled.
In parts of five seasons in the minors, he struggled with injuries and his control. He only combined for 166 2/3 innings with only 36 2/3 innings coming since 2018.
In his career, he has averaged 7.2 walks per nine innings but since 2018, his walk rate is 12.77 per nine innings, which is about four times the league average.
Entering the 2017 season, Pint was ranked as the #51 overall prospect in baseball by MLB.com and he was #100 entering the 2018 season. By 2019, he dropped down to the Rockies #8 prospect, and in 2020, he was their #30 overall prospect.
In 2021, though, his pitching coach thought that he was turning a corner for the better. “[H]e was in a better place, this year, than he has been in a while,” said Kibler.
Pint is hoping that he can continue to turn the corner for the better in 2022 and if he can stay healthy and re-establish some control and lower his walk rate, perhaps he can become close to the pitcher that the Rockies thought they were drafting six years ago.
Update: The Spokane Indians have since tweeted out this.