The Guardians announced to reporters, including Zack Meisel of The Athletic, that they have recalled infield prospect Brayan Rocchio. He’ll take the roster spot of third baseman José Ramírez, who has been placed on the bereavement list. Daniel Álvarez-Montes of El Extra Base had previously reported on Rocchio’s promotion.
Rocchio, 22, actually joined the big league club once already, but he was optioned the next day without getting into a game. Both Amed Rosario and Tyler Freeman were dealing with some minor injuries at that time but ultimately didn’t need to go on the injured list. As such, Rocchio is still looking to make his major league debut, despite that brief trip to the big leagues last month.
Signed as an amateur out of Venezuela, he has continued to impress prospect evaluators as he’s risen up the minor league ladder. Coming into this year, he was placed on lists of the top 100 prospects in the league by Baseball America, MLB Pipeline, ESPN, FanGraphs and Keith Law of The Athletic.
Those outlets generally praise Rocchio’s infield defense and his bat-to-ball skills as he doesn’t strike out or walk much. Last year, he split his time between Double-A and Triple-A, hitting 18 home runs and striking out at just a 17.5% clip. That led to a batting line of .257/.336/.420 and wRC+ of 106 between the two levels. This year, he’s been struck out in just 12.8% of his trips to the plate at Triple-A while hitting .338/.396/.486 for a wRC+ of 126.
Rocchio has split his time between shortstop and second base this year but has also seen some time at third base in the lower levels. He’s not in the lineup tonight, as the Guardians have Gabriel Arias at third while the usual middle infield tandem of Rosario and Andrés Giménez are still in place. It’s possible that Rocchio is only up to serve in a reserve capacity for a few days until Ramírez returns, but he will hopefully get a chance to make his debut this time.
Arias needs to go back to AAA to find his swing.
Agreed. They’ll probably give him run at 3rd until Ramirez is back and then decide who stays and who goes.
Go get ‘em kid!