Goatriders of the Apocalypse

The Top 20 Cubs Prospects - #7 Tyler Covin

#7 Tyler Colvin

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Prospect #7 Tyler Colvin

Make or break describes Colvin effectively.  Another first round Cubs pick who is questionable at best, he'll be 23 most of next season, and it will take some persuasion to get him started in Iowa rather than Tennessee.  Colvin has now been a part of the Cubs system since 2006, and in that time his success level has been very hit and miss.

He's demonstrated good power - he averaged a homerun for every 28 at bats his first 3 stops in the minors, and in the process he also had a great batting average.  He batted .306 at Daytona last year and .291 in Tennessee.  The only problem was that he couldn't draw walks.

The weird thing is, the Cubs seemed to focus on getting his discipline improved, and he actually seemed to listen to them.  Colvin drew 15 walks in 492 at bats before this past season - he came close to tripling that total in 540 at bats in '08.  The only problem in 08 was that he lost his contact ability and dropped his power totals.

In his 540 at bats, Colvin batted .256 and averaged a homerun every 39 at bats.  It'll be interesting to see if he finally puts it together in '09.

Scouting Report

Should he put it all together, Colvin brings the following tools to the table:

  • Plus power, in theory.  The Cubs are hoping Colvin could turn into a 20-30 homerun hitter someday.
  • Plus speed.  Colvin hit 11 triples last year, and can steal bases when given the opportunity.
  • Push contact.  He'll need to get his stroke back while knowing when to let 'em pass in 09.
  • Diminutive discipline.  He worked to improve his plate discipline last year - but at what cost!!? - and he'll never make it in the show if he can't improve his ability to draw walks.

Summary

Colvin reminds me a lot of Corey Patterson, for many good reasons.  A first round pick with power and speed who walks about as often as Captain Pike after The Accident.

Colvin probably will play in Iowa this year.  It'll be interesting to see what happens - will he surge his way toward a Chicago appearance?  Will he fail and be another first round Cubs bust?  Oh, the questions!  The worry!

Rating: B+
Odds of reaching the Majors =
The same odds of Corey Patterson reaching the majors back before the start of the 2000 season.
Odds of becoming a successful player at the Major League Level = Whatever the odds are of Colvin no longer being perplexed by the apparent contradiction of walking and hitting at the same time!

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You certainly can't

teach someone to have a good eye at the plate, they either have it or they don't. What's sickening is that it takes three years in the organization to realize the type of player they actually have and how they want to develop him.

Consequently most of the time, players like Pie, Patterson and most likely Colvin, under-perform. Either the organization doesn't scout properly, doesn't have the vision and personnel in place to develop the talent they do draft or both.

Therefore it wouldn't surprise me for these problems of scouting and development of all but the can't miss kids to persist until hopefully a new owner takes a flamethrower to most of the organization.

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