Counting Down Top Prospects: No. 30 Gonzalez
30. Rayan Gonzalez, RHP
Born: 10/18/1990. B-T: R-R. Ht.: 6-4. Wt.: 231. Drafted: Bethune-Cookman, 2012 (21st round). Signed by: John Cedarburg..
A native of Puerto Rico, Gonzalez was in position to make the Rockies bullpen out of spring training a year ago, but arm problems that eventually led to Tommy John surgery in mid-May cost him the season. He had been an Arizona Fall League Rising Star selection in 2016 when he allowed three runs in 11 2/3 innings over 11 relief appearances, striking out 11 and walking only two. He overpowers hitters with a 96 mph cutter that has natural depth. It’s complimented by a downer curveball that will play at altitude and he has a quality changeup. Given his limited experience – 208 1/3 professional innings since signing with the Rockies as a 21st round draft choice in 2012 – the Rockies will be careful with him in the spring, and most likely he won’t be ready to pitch competitively until mid-season. Coming off the Tommy John surgery, combined with spending three stints on the disabled list with High-A Modesto in 2015 has the Rockies wanting to make sure he has rebuilt strength before getting him back in an competitive atmosphere.