There will be a different feel for Brendan Rodgers heading into this year’s spring training. With DJ LeMahieu now a member of the New York Yankees, second base is up in the air and Rodgers is one of three players competing for the starting spot.
But a big spring training could help the Rockies top prospect make the big league roster and form a very talented duo between Rodgers and Trevor Story up the middle. Like Story did when he hit .340 with six long balls in 2016 spring training to earn the starting job at shortstop, Rodgers will be looking to do a lot of the same. He will have more competition to beat out. Though if he can swing it well and play consistent defense, he’ll have an opportunity to see some playing time alongside Story in 2019.
Colorado Rockies Second Baseman of the Future: Brendan Rodgers
Standing in his way will be Ryan McMahon, who started 91 games as a rookie last season, and Garrett Hampson, who received a late-season call-up over Rodgers and appeared in 24 games in 2018 with Colorado. Both players also saw at-bats in Colorado’s postseason run. Hampson is two years older than Rodgers and was a bit more advanced last year, which is why he got the call up to the majors over Rodgers.
In four minor league seasons, Rodgers has hit an impressive .291 while playing all over the infield. He is extremely versatile and was originally drafted as a shortstop back in 2015 in the first round, third overall. Last year he really flourished in Double-A, smacking 17 homers in 95 games while hitting a respectable .275. He then got the call-up to Triple-A Albuquerque towards the end of the season. He appeared in 19 games but hit just .232. Despite that, the 22-year-old has been a consistent hitter his entire professional career. Over the last few years, he has really matured at the plate.
Although Story had a clear path to the majors in ’16 with no one in his way at shortstop due to Jose Reyes dealing with Domestic Violence issues, Rodgers does have the opportunity to earn a starting spot even though he is still quite young and faces competition. The Rockies have seen exactly what Rodgers is capable of both offensively and defensively. He’s got an extremely strong arm and can play both shortstop and third base as well if need be. Like Story, he’s a tremendous athlete with great range and soft hands, owning a lifetime .962 fielding percentage.
But the one thing that will fast track him to the big leagues out of spring training will be his bat. It’s been the standout part of Rodgers game his entire career. If he can show that he can rake against major league arms, it could help him crack the big league roster.
He may not a get a call-up till later in the season
If Rodgers struggles in spring training, He’ll most likely start the year in Triple-A and become more comfortable there. After all, he only saw action in 19 games at that level. It wouldn’t be a bad thing to let him develop and see more advanced arms in Triple-A.
With McMahon and Hampson both already having experience at the big league level, there is definitely a good chance one of them will earn the starting spot on opening day. But if Rodgers can really impress this spring, it will help his chances of making the major league roster. He could see some time split at second base, or eventually earning the starting job entirely.
But if there is one thing that’s for sure, it’s that Brendan Rodgers is definitely the second basemen of the future for the Colorado Rockies. He’s the number ten prospect in all of baseball for good reason. This young man has all the tools to be a star in the majors.
It’s only a matter of time till we will see him showcase his talents in the Mile High city. It will be very exciting to see how Rodgers fairs in spring training and if he can make the big league roster.
If not, expect to see the 22-year old called up the major leagues at some point in 2019.
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