Nolan Arenado's self-assessment is descriptive and succinct.
"I'm the kind of guy who plays with a lot of instinct and a lot of fire," the Rockies' third-base prospect said. "I think those are good things."
Arenado's goal this spring is simple.
"I want to make the big-league club," he said. "But I can't think about that. I can't let that get in the way. Besides, it's way too early to talk about that."
Maybe so, but Arenado has the kind of talent that draws attention. In the Rockies' 4-3 Cactus League victory over the Reds on Thursday, Arenado blasted a run-scoring double in the fourth inning, then started a 5-4-3 triple play in the fifth. His smile was wide, his passion for the game evident when he pumped his fist after the triple play.
"I'm having more fun this year and I feel a lot more comfortable," said Arenado, who is 3-for-8, including a home run.
Early projections are that Arenado, who turns 22 on April 16, will open the season with the Triple-A Colorado Springs Sky Sox. The Rockies have Chris Nelson, DJ LeMahieu and Jordan Pacheco lined up at third base in front of Arenado, but that doesn't mean team management isn't keeping a close eye on Arenado.
"He's already made an impression with a lot of people in our organization that have been around him," said first-year Rockies manager Walt Weiss. "He's put himself in a nice position. He's shown that he can play. I wasn't around him last spring, but it looks to me like he's slowing the game down and his ability is showing up."


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