HomeMLB RumorsRockies To Promote Jordan Beck, Place Nolan Jones On IL

Rockies To Promote Jordan Beck, Place Nolan Jones On IL

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The Rockies are calling up top outfield prospect Jordan Beck for his big league debut, as first reported by Ben McKee of GoVols 24/7. He’s not on the 40-man roster, so the Rox will need to make at least one corresponding transaction and possibly two. Luke Zahlmann of the Denver Gazette reports that fellow outfielder Nolan Jones is likely headed to the injured list. Jones has been bothered by a back injury recently. He returned to the lineup Sunday but exited the game early due to continued discomfort. The Rockies are off today but open a three-game set in Miami tomorrow. McKee writes that Beck is currently traveling to Miami to join the big league club.

Beck, 23, was the No. 38 overall draft pick out of the University of Tennessee in 2022 and entered the season ranked 81st among all big league prospects, per MLB.com. He’s gotten out to a brilliant start in Triple-A Albuquerque, hitting .307/.405/.594 with five homers, ten doubles, two triples, five steals (in five attempts), a 14.9% walk rate and a 19.8% strikeout rate in 121 plate appearances. By measure of wRC+, he’s been 40% better than league average after weighting for his home park and league run-scoring environment.

It’s a strong showing for Beck and a particularly encouraging development in terms of his hit tool; he’s posted big offensive numbers at every level since being drafted, but he fanned in an alarming 31.8% of his 223 plate appearances in his first taste of Double-A last year. He moved up a rung on the minor league ladder regardless, and a month or so into the 2024 season that looks like it was the right call.

Improvement to his hit tool is vital for Beck, as scouting reports have tended to tout his above-average to plus power and average or better speed while simultaneously expressing concerns about his contact abilities. In ranking Beck fourth among Rox farmhands, Baseball America noted that he has a particular penchant for swinging through velocity at the top of the zone but otherwise tends to make good swing decisions, mitigating his contact issues on pitches thrown to other areas.

As for the 25-year-old Jones, he’s had a nightmare start to the 2024 season. In 103 plate appearances, he’s slashing just .170/.243/.277 with a 36% strikeout rate on the season. Jones impressed with a standout .297/.389/.542 showing as a rookie last year, and while some degree of regression was always fair to expect based on a .401 BABIP and 29.7% strikeout rate, this level of step back was generally unexpected. Jones is actually making more contact on pitches within the zone and chasing off the plate less often, but he’s seen his called-strike percentage balloon from 19.9% to 25.3%. His overall swing rate is down from 41.5% to 39%, and the more passive approach seems to have led to an excess of called strikes putting him behind in the count.

Assuming Beck does indeed get the call, it’ll be his first MLB look and it’ll come with what should be a legitimate chance to win a long-term role in the outfield. Jones looks to have left field locked down — assuming he can right the ship once activated — and Brenton Doyle is in the midst of a breakout performance in center field (albeit with some significant BABIP help of his own, at an unsustainable .446). However, right field is still largely up for grabs. Michael Toglia entered the season as the primary right fielder but has since been optioned to Triple-A. Sean Bouchard and Hunter Goodman have both gotten looks there but neither has established himself as an everyday player. Beck has experience across all three outfield positions though, so he could fill a variety of roles if he hits well enough to keep himself in the big leagues.

If Beck is in the majors to stay, he’d be on track for free agency following the 2030 season and would be arbitration-eligible four times as a Super Two player, beginning in the 2026-27 offseason. Future optional assignments could alter both trajectories.


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