The most recent Rockies mailbag over at MLB.com confirms something most of us close Colorado observers already know: there's a pretty significant gap between the young talent already with the major league team and the reinforcements in the minors. AAA Colorado Springs finished last in their division at 66-78 last season, and they probably won't be a great deal better in 2006. The fact is that a lot of guys who could be Sky Sox, from Clint Barmes to Jeff Francis, are needed by the big club right now. All of the Rockies' prospects with upside, whether you're talking about Stewart, U-Ball, Tulo, or Macri, will start this year in AA or below.
Thomas Harding also notes that Choo Freeman is out of minor league options, meaning there is an extremely good chance the outfielder will no longer be in the Colorado organization after spring training. Not a huge loss, but it is something to be aware of going into the Cactus League. If Freeman can produce at all, the team may give him one more chance at the major league level at the expense of the roster spot of someone like Ryan Shealy.