Las Vegas, Nevada —— Late last month, Baseball Census saw Colorado Rockies right-handed veteran minor league pitcher CC Lee throw for the Triple-A Pacific Coast League‘s Albuquerque Isotopes on the road at Cashman Field in Las Vegas against the Las Vegas 51s. Our full CC Lee scouting report is below; in addition, you can visit our CC Lee baseball player page by clicking here.
CC Lee scouting report notes
A big league veteran who saw The Show in parts of three seasons with the Cleveland Indians, CC Lee came over to the Colorado Rockies in a minor league deal in December, 2016 and it’s early on proving to be a shrewd, if quiet, minor league free agent acquisition for the NL West club. Yes, Lee is 30 years old, and his most projectable pitching days are behind him, but he’s throwing the ball very well for the Albuquerque Isotopes right now in Triple-A in the Colorado Rockies’ system, and he’s doing it with slightly more velocity are harder, more developed stuff than he’s had in his past — and that you’d expect of most guys coming out of bullpens in the Pacific Coast League.
Late last night, we profiled Colorado Rockies reliever Austin House in another scouting report—you can read that report in full right here—and Lee is similar in outcome anchoring the ‘Topes bullpen right now: 26 strikeouts against seven walks in 18.1 innings pitched over 14 games, to go along with a 2-1 record and a 2.95 ERA with a .232 opponents’ batting average. It’s what a big league veteran should be doing in the PCL, maybe, but the stuff Lee is showing while doing it is encouraging, and might give him enough to sneak another shot at the big leagues if a role in the Rockies’ bullpen opens up.
Lee’s fastball is sitting 93-94 mph right now, which is a slight bit above his big league fastball averages from the last few years. He’s topping out at 95 mph, and showing good, late arm-side run on the pitch that is tying up right-handed batters and leaving the door open low and away for his slider. That slider, which has great tilt and is thrown hard at 82-84 mph (topping out at 85 mph), has proven to be a very good strikeout pitch for CC Lee in this league. He hides it well, throws it like a fastball, and commands it like one, too. Those two pitches have proven to be more or less all that he needs against Triple-A hitters, and it should help him survive moderately well in the big leagues again, too, if he throws in short stints. His arm looks alive, and there’s more in the tank here to be used if he’s called upon at Coors Field.
There’s a reason we ran our CC Lee scouting report at the same time we look at Austin House down in Albuquerque; both relievers are throwing the ball very well right now, but Lee has the distinct advantage in a few different ways and might be a wise choice should the Rockies need to dip down into the ‘Topes bullpen and off their 40-man. Lee’s big league experience will play well for him should he called up again; his fastball has a bit more consistent, late life to it than House’s, along with being thrown slightly harder; and Lee’s slider has more pinpoint command and a sharper break with better tilt.
Obviously, whether Lee or House ever get called up by the Colorado Rockies, either one will fill a low-leverage bullpen role rather than serving as major parts of the club’s future plans. But both are throwing well right now in Triple-A, and eventually, everybody needs some bullpen help. When that time comes for the Rockies, while there are strengths to both of these hurlers, CC Lee has the tools, stuff, and experience far more readily accessible to contribute quickly at the big league level.
To visit CC Lee’s player page, please click here.
CC Lee scouting report: 140 characters or less
A big league veteran who has seen an uptick in velocity and stuff, CC Lee might yet get another shot at the Majors at this rate.
In this Colorado Rockies / CC Lee baseball scouting report: