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Rockies sticking with what's worked with Draft

DENVER -- Changes in the front office did not lead to major changes in how the Rockies approach the annual Draft, vice president of scouting Bill Schmidt said.

Drafted players not panning out -- such as first-round pitchers Greg Reynolds (2006) and Casey Weathers (2007), who got injured and did not make an impact -- hurt the team's depth in recent seasons. But the Rockies have quietly built depth to the point of logjams in some cases.

Outfielder-first baseman Kyle Parker (No. 1, 2010) is waiting his turn at Triple-A. Shortstop Trevor Story (supplemental first round, '11) and third baseman Ryan McMahon (second round, '13) are potential stars at positions where the Rockies have established ones in Troy Tulowitzki and Nolan Arenado, respectfully. Center fielder David Dahl (first round, '12) seemed on the fast track before suffering a spleen injury last week (he could return to Double-A New Britain before season's end).

The club also is excited about catcher Tom Murphy (third round, '12). With righty Eddie Butler (supplemental first round, '12) in the rotation and righty Jon Gray (first round, '13) on his way, the club can say the Draft is producing a wave of talent.

There is a new general manager in Jeff Bridich, but he used to be player development director.

"We haven't changed our Draft strategy, and Jeff has been a big part of things here for a while," Schmidt said.

With the third overall pick in Monday's Draft, a compensation pick at 27, a Competitive Balance Round A pick at 38 and the second-rounder at 44, the staff has been busy. Bridich has been personally involved, scouting not only players the club could pick but players the club may want in trades in future years.

One of the biggest developments in recent years has been the use of analytics, Schmidt said. While he notes the stats "can't tell you what's in a player's heart," they are helpful in a Draft of 50 rounds, where many players seem the same but some are better for the Rockies than others.

Schmidt said he values the input of Matt Obernauer, assistant baseball operations/general counsel, and Trevor Patch, coordinator of baseball analytics. As with most of their analytics, and with Draft information such as how they rank players, the Rockies don't release details about their system and what is valued. But Schmidt said it's an important part of the process.

"I have always used the statistical information, and Matt Obernauer and Trevor Patch do a good job of analysis," Schmidt said. "There is great information out there, especially on college players."

Thomas Harding is a reporter for Follow him on Twitter @harding_at_mlb, and like his Facebook page.
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