Albuquerque, New Mexico —— At the top of this post, watch our scouting video of Colorado Rockies utility infield prospect Pat Valaika, taken from his work at the 2016 Arizona Fall League as a member of the Salt River Rafters.
To read Cameron Goeldner’s feature interview with the Colorado Rockies’ Pat Valaika that was also published today, please click here.
Pat Valaika scouting report notes
Pat Valaika doesn’t do anything superbly well, and he doesn’t do anything very badly, either—the sum of which make him exactly what you’d expect based on his role in a brief big league stint with the Colorado Rockies in 2016: utility infielder. A UCLA product who made it fairly quickly through the Rockies’ minor league ranks right up to his big league debut in September and then an Arizona Fall League appearance last October and November, Valaika isn’t flashy or toolsy, but he’s consistent and already mature in his overall approach.
In his first limited taste of big league action last September, Valaika wasn’t special—he hit .263/.263/.474/.737 across just 19 at-bats in 13 games—but he showed off the versatility that’ll define his coming big league career, playing second, short, and third in spells to reliever Rockies’ starters. He’s not cut out for an extended gig at short, but he’ll do just fine there in short spurts while also playing across the infield. At the plate, he has good balance and decent bat speed, but showed very little potential for future power when Baseball Census saw him in the Arizona Fall League. He need not be a home run hitter, of course, but he’ll need above-average contact skills to survive at the plate in the big leagues.
Overall, he’s that exact type of 25th/26th man on a big league roster, likely to spend much of the next several years going up and back between Triple-A and the Major Leagues as he’s needed based on injuries and whatever else. To that end, expect him to take a couple trips between Albuquerque and Denver in 2017 and 2018.
For our feature interview with Colorado Rockies infielder Pat Valaika, please click here.
To visit Pat Valaika’s player page, please click here.
Pat Valaika scouting report: 140 characters or less
Proficient across the board with a knack for contact, Pat Valaika has the look of an up-and-down utility infielder for years to come.
Pat Valaika scouting report video
Below, enjoy our Pat Valaika video from when he represented the Colorado Rockies in October and November 2016 at the Arizona Fall League.
Pat Valaika scouting report GIFs
In addition to the Pat Valaika video, we have some GIFs of the Colorado Rockies’ infield prospect for those seeking a deeper (and shareable!) look at his swing mechanics: