DENVER (AP) – A decade ago, the Colorado Rockies used their first pick on a shortstop named Troy Tulowitzki.
That turned out pretty well. So well, in fact, that the Rockies went down that road again, selecting 18-year-old Brendan Rodgers with the No. 3 pick in the Major League Baseball draft Monday night.
It’s the first time since Tulowitzki was taken at No. 7 in 2005 that the Rockies have used their opening pick on a shortstop.
The 6-foot-1, 199-pound Rodgers played for Lake Mary High School in Florida, where he hit .360 with eight homers and 23 RBIs in 2015. He also turned 15 double plays.
Rodgers took part in the Under Armour All-American Game last summer and caught the Rockies’ attention.
“Brendan is a talented kid,” said Bill Schmidt, the Rockies’ vice president of scouting. “His ability to hit – hit with power. Fluid defensive action. Strong arm.”
Sounds almost like a description of Tulowitzki.
Rodgers can’t wait to meet Tulowitzki in the next few days and talk a little shop – one shortstop to another.
“He’s someone I look up to and hopefully, in a few weeks, maybe get some tips from him,” Rodgers said. “I mean, he is one of the best power-hitting shortstops to have ever played the game.”
His idol, though, is Derek Jeter, who retired from the New York Yankees last season.
“He’s a great role model and type of person you want to play like or be like one day,” Rodgers said.
Rodgers said he doesn’t really care at what stage of Colorado’s farm system he begins – he’s just eager to start the journey toward Coors Field.
“This is a hitter’s park. It’s where I wanted to be,” Rodgers said. “I luckily ended up here.”
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