First baseman Zuanich promoted to Tulsa

June 23, 2011 | 4:37 pm | 3  

First baseman Mike Zuanich has been promoted from high Class A Modesto to Double-A Tulsa after a very strong first half for the Nuts.

Zuanich, who turns 25 on July 10, hit .366/.455/.674 for Modesto with 14 homer and 49 RBI in 224 at-bats, along with 30 walks and 59 strikeouts. His .674 slugging percentage leads the California League, and Zuanich ranks fourth in batting and tied for fourth in total bases (151).

Zuanich can also play the outfield and is likely to see more time there than at first base with Tulsa, given the presence of first baseman Ben Paulsen. Zuanich can play first base when Paulsen serves as the designated hitter.

Where Zuanich plays is less important to the Colorado Rockies development staff than how he does on offense, particularly given his age. Scouts question whether Zuanich will hit major league fastballs and see him as a hitter who at the lower levels has thrived on pitchers’ mistakes. Zuanich, who played at Modesto last season and was drafted in the 28th round in 2008 out of UC-Santa Barbara, will now have a chance to show he can handle better pitching at the Double-A level.

First baseman Jared Clark has been activated to take the place of Zuanich on Modesto’s roster. The Nuts resume play Thursday at Bakersfield following three days off for the California League-Carolina League All-Star Game.

Clark had been in extended spring training recovering from a broken right big toe, an injury he sustained in spring training while making a sliding attempt to catch a foul ball. Since the extended spring training program ended 2 1/2 weeks ago, Clark has been at Modesto, and now with Zuanich gone will get a chance to play.

3 Comments »

  • Michael | June 23, 2011 | 7:24 pm

    Great reward for Zuanich. Also nice that Clark is active again. He played well last season. One day the Rockies will start producing MLB star hitters. When? That’s an answer for someone else to provide.

  • progmatinee | June 24, 2011 | 8:54 am

    Hopefully an answer Blackmon will provide!

  • Rockies student | December 27, 2011 | 4:57 pm

    Zuanich is a GREAT Talent. I was able to see him play in Modesto and Tulsa…He is for real…I hope the Rockies continue to move him up to the big team. He is a outstanding 1st baseman….Hitter plus power..