Outfielder Jordan Beck, a Rockies supplemental first-round Draft pick this year (38th overall) out of the University of Tennessee, has adjusted nicely to the frequency and intensity of the Minors -- as evidenced by his combined .295 batting average and .908 OPS through 26 regular-season games.
Already, the 21-year-old Beck -- the Rockies' No. 9 prospect per MLB Pipeline -- has experienced two postseasons -- the Arizona Complex League championship series in late August, and, currently, he is playing for the Fresno Grizzlies against San Jose in the Single-A California League’s North Division Series. In Fresno's 12-3 victory in Game 1 on Tuesday night, Beck went 3-for-5 with three RBIs.
But with the excitement, Beck has found an underrated, and quiet, benefit to turning pro:
Sleep, in quality and quantity.
“I really do think that the sleep part is huge,” Beck said. “From college, you get home 10, 11, 12 o’clock at night and you’re having to wake up at 7 [a.m.] for a class. That’s six, seven, eight hours of sleep, vs. now, I can go to bed at 10, 11, 12, and sleep until 10:30 or 11 [a.m.]. That’s huge for rest and recovery, and your body feels [it].”
Beck has unleashed the energy with his bat in his early pro career.
During the collegiate season, the 6-foot-3, 220-pound Beck set career highs with 18 home runs, a .291 batting average and a .570 slugging percentage. A question from last summer – how well Beck would perform with a wood bat. He hit .267 with two homers in 27 games in the Cape Cod League. But the Rockies didn’t worry, and Beck is connecting so far.
“To be honest, wood bats break, so you’ve got to be more selective with the pitches that you want to see,” said Beck, who had more walks (21) than strikeouts (20) in his 26 games at two levels. “At the levels I’m at now, a lot of these guys have good stuff but don’t throw many strikes. So you can be as selective as you want.”
After the promotion, Beck showed how adept he is with the wood bat by launching two impressive home runs.
Beck has fit in nicely with a team full of prospects. The club moved Beck and No. 7 prospect Sterlin Thompson (31st overall pick) up from the ACL club. Thompson has been playing third base, and prefers the infield. Beck, who can play all three positions, and No. 12 prospect Yanquiel Fernández are handling the corners. (Click here and scroll down for more on Fernández.) No. 6 prospect Benny Montgomery plays center. (Click here and scroll to the Aug. 26 update for more on Montgomery.)
Beck said the key to playoffs are not making too much or too little of them, but simply being “glad to be in that situation.” The Rockies are happy they have him.
“It seems like it has been an easy transition,” Rockies player development director Chris Forbes said. “The clubhouse [in Fresno] is a good place, and very welcoming. The club has expectations to win every night, and I think Beck and Thompson have acclimated well. Beck seems like he has a good feel for what he’s doing in the batter’s box.”
And when he’s done, he sleeps well at night.