Dante Bichette was returning from batting practice at Salt River Fields, having just watched Wilin Rosario take his cuts.
"I heard he's got power. Oh, my gosh, he's got power!" marveled Bichette, the Rockies' new hitting instructor.
Power in the batter's box, most certainly. But does Rosario have the right stuff to overcome his nightmarish rookie season behind the plate? Can he evolve into the top-notch, big-league catcher the Rockies desperately need?
Catching coach Jerry Weinstein has no doubt Rosario has the inner strength to pull it off.
"Either he is a great actor, or he is a very even, self-confident personality," Weinstein said. "In my opinion, it's the latter. I think a lot of guys could have been destroyed by (his) situation, but this guy believes in himself, and he's very prideful."
New manager Walt Weiss also is a believer.
"He's got the skills to be a frontline catcher, and he's got the all-around skills to be a star," Weiss said.
But those skills must be dramatically refined for Rosario to ever reach that higher plane.
His 2012 season was a dramatic split decision. He set a Rockies rookie record with 28 home runs and led National League rookies in homers, RBIs (71) and slugging percentage (.530). According to Stats LLC, Rosario was just the fourth rookie catcher age 23 or younger to hit at least 20 homers.
Rockies' Wilin Rosario working to reshape himself as a catcher
Denver Post | Feb 17