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Top Rockies C prospect on the way back

Posted on: February 24, 2011 11:23 am
Edited on: February 24, 2011 11:23 am
 
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- The Rockies want Chris Iannetta to bounce back and establish himself as their No. 1 catcher this year. But the Rockies also have an eye on the future, and they've got to be thrilled that top catching prospect Willin Rosario has made big progress in his return from knee surgery.

"I feel good," said Rosario, who turned 22 this week but is in his third big-league spring training. "I've been able to catch bullpens, catch live batting practice and hit. I don't feel 100 percent yet, but I feel good."

Rosario had a breakout season in 2010, hitting 19 home runs and driving in 52 runs in just 73 games at Double-A Tulsa, before he tore the anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee in a rundown play in early August. Rosario also had a chance to play in the All-Star Futures Game.

"That was exciting," he said. "A big-league stadium, cameras everywhere. When I saw that, I said to myself, 'This is what I want. I want to be in a big-league stadium.'"

He won't be there to start this year. There's a chance the Rockies could even take it slow with him at the start of the minor-league season, although Rosario said he expects to be ready for opening day.

Meanwhile, Iannetta will try to prove that he's better than his .197 batting average and .701 OPS in 2010 showed.

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