Tagged: Franklin Morales

Greg Smith Out, Morales Claims Spot in Rotation

Greg Smith left yesterday’s game with a “dead arm” which he got crushed by Oakland with.  He had the injury last year, and the team says he will most likely not start in the rotation.  More importantly, this gives Franklin Morales a spot, probably the 5th, since Clint Hurdle said, “If we go with five (starters), he’ll (Morales) will be in the mix.”  I’m excited because Morales has a lot more upside, and now he will have a chance to become a full-time Major League starter.  I, and other Rockies fans, cannot wait to see what he does with a full season after what he has showed in the minors and in 2007.  Right now, the rotation goes Cook, Jimenez, De La Rosa, Marquis and Morales, unless Clint Hurdle goes with four guys, which he said is a possibility until April 21st. 
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Position Breakdowns: Catcher

With just seven days to go before spring training, I am unveiling my 2009 Position Breakdowns for the Colorado Rockies, talking about who will start this year, the status of the backup(s), the future of the position and the lineup for this year.  I will be talking a lot about the future of the position for the club, since the team is mostly rebuilding, the future is more important than this year for this club.  I’ll also be pretending like I am the manager, talking about where each player might play in the next couple years and possible trades, so here are the eight positions for the Rockies, then the bullpen and rotation breakdown sometime near Opening Day.

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The Starter: Chris Iannetta, age 26.
The Backup: Yorvit Torrealbla, age 30.
   Backup Status: Ready to take job.
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The Situation:  Chris Iannetta has a very good chance at playing a lot as the Rockies have given him the role as the future catcher for 2009 and beyond.  The only thing standing in the way of Chris playing 150 games is Yorvit’s ability to help the pitchers, and Clint Hurdle will use that to his advantage when breaking in Franklin Morales and Ubaldo Jimenez. 
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The Future: Chris Iannetta is the team’s long-term solution at catcher after few years of constant changing of the player behind the plate.  The Rockies also have a Plan B,  20-year old power threat Wilin Rosario, one of the team’s best prospects who is also a great defensive player. 

The Trading Block:  None of the catchers seem to be good trade chips now, but if Iannetta can settle into the catcher’s role, Yorvit might be traded to a contender for anyone willing to give up a strarter, or a reliever if the two young bullpen pitchers faulter. 

Realistic Expectations from Catchers:  I don’t like to make up too many numbers, but I think 25 homeruns is very possible.  Another thing needed from the position is a good season from Ubaldo Jimenez and one from Franklin Morales. 

The Key: The catchers really need to focus on helping the team rebuild, most importantely by helping the young pitchers learn how to pitch in the major leagues for when all the young stars emerge from the minors during the next decade.