Dynasty Baseball

2021 Dynasty Baseball Profile: Brayan Rocchio

on

Welcome back for the next article in my year-long 2021 Dynasty Baseball Profile series. I will be chronicling some lesser-known prospects that, depending on your league size, you might want to target in a trade or pick up off the waiver wire. Today we focus our attention on Brayan Rocchio.

Maybe I was wrong in my article last week when I said Mother Nature was punishing me for not profiling a Detroit Tigers prospect yet. Because let me tell you, we have been absolutely bombarded with snow since then. So yeah, that certainly didn’t work.

I think we can all rest a little bit easier knowing that I did not get into meteorology. Or I guess it is just possible that Mother Nature hates me. Both make quite a lot of sense if we are being honest.

I digress, as I am excited to profile another player in what is one of my favorite Minor League systems. While Cleveland is best known for its ability to churn out pitchers that acclimate very quickly and quite well to the Big Leagues, I have yet another hitter for you this week.

With all nonsense out of the way, let’s get into it.

2021 Dynasty Baseball Profile: Brayan Rocchio

Profile

Brayan Rocchio is a 20-year-old Infielder from Venezuela in the Cleveland Indians Minor League system. He was J2 signee from the 2017 class. He comes in at a very respectable 322 in my Dynasty Baseball Rankings.

Cleveland looks to have struck gold with this signing class. Not only did they sign Rocchio but they also managed to snag both George Valera and Aaron Bracho.  These three guys could form the nucleus of the next great Cleveland run. Rocchio came as the least expensive of the trio.  Signing for “just” $125,000 while Valera and Brach both signed for well over a million.

“The Professor”, as he is known, is regarded for having a very advanced Baseball IQ. This helps him both in the field and at the dish. We will get into more specifics as we examine each of his tools. It is this mental makeup that really helps Rocchio stand out for me when compared to his peers. Something like Baseball IQ, which you cannot measure, is often an intangible that can really separate players on the field.

Let’s take a look at each of his tools, where they are now, and where I project them to be at his prime.

Hit

Being a switch hitter is an advantage I don’t think gets enough credit or value for Dynasty purposes. Having the ability to hit from both sides of the plate is so valuable. Especially as the game has changed where platooning players is so common. So, in my eyes, just the fact that Rocchio can hit from both sides of the plate gives him a bump to his hit tool.

The biggest separator here for Rocchio for me is his ability to recognize pitches. This is part of that Baseball IQ I mentioned above. Quite often the last thing a prospect truly develops and what holds them back the most is the ability to determine what is coming their way. For Rocchio, a major flaw for most is arguably his greatest strength.

Rocchio doesn’t time his swing like most with a leg kick. Instead, he simply relies on his quick hands to generate plus bat speed. While he does tend to overswing and get a bit aggressive at the plate, ultimately he is a line drive hitter. When he makes solid contact the ball really jumps off his bat.

Current Grade: 55 Prime Grade: 60

Power

So many players these days are focused on launch angle.  Rocchio manages to produce some natural loft without having to sell out to get the ball in the air.  This certainly helps to explain why his hit tool is so solid.  While he isn’t a masher at the plate, Rocchio holds his own in the power department.  He is mostly gap to gap power at his current development level but with some room to fill out further, that could easily change.

I don’t foresee Rocchio ever hitting 30+ dingers in a year but expecting him to get in the 15-20 range is certainly reasonable. This is going to be his most interesting tool to monitor. It could easily be the difference between Rocchio being merely an average Big Leaguer and a guy that makes multiple All-Star appearances.

Current Grade:40 Prime Grade: 50

Speed

This is where Rocchio really starts to get exciting. A guy with a good hit tool, emerging power and he can run. That is the type of profile that makes us Dynasty guys drool.

Just like Rocchio can be aggressive in the batter’s box he does the same thing on the bases.  He does need some work on utilizing his speed to transform it into a better ability to steal bases.  If he can do that, and quite honestly I think he will, you are looking at a guy that should routinely swipe 20-30 bags a year.

As is common with most young prospects, you have to be aware that his speed could begin to diminish as he grows into his body. In his case, however, I think the uptick in baserunning ability will outweigh the downtick in speed as he adds to his frame.

Current Grade:60 Prime Grade: 60

Field

For Dynasty purposes these next two tools get a bit boring. They shouldn’t be overlooked though. Being able to be an asset in the field is one way for a player to earn more at bats. At the end of the day that is crucial for a player to provide enough counting stats for him to be a valuable Dynasty asset.

For Rocchio, he looks to have the ability to stick at SS long term.  He moves his feet well and has clean glove and arm actions.  His range is adequate but may have some trouble with some balls that get deep into the hole.

Current Grade: 50 Prime Grade 55

Arm

Do not take this a knock but Rocchio has a very run-of-the-mill arm at SS.  He simply has average arm strength, though he does show a good ability to transfer the ball from the glove.  Rocchio won’t dazzle you with spectacular moves but he makes all the requisite plays routinely.

He would benefit from a move to 2B as far as playing in the field is concerned.  He is more than capable of playing the more premiere position but if forced to the keystone he remains a solid up-the-middle defender.

Current Grade: 50 Prime Grade 50

Overall

At the end of the day, Brayan Rocchio has all the makings of at least a highly intelligent, fully capable everyday regular at the Big League level.  He does not wow you anywhere on the diamond but he also does not scare you away with any deficiencies.  When we are profiling guys that are not exactly mainstream names I think that is something you have to keep in mind.

The kids with the flashy tools and the name power tend to make bigger headlines.  The guys like Rocchio tend to be more of the glue that holds the team together.  The guys that do all the small things that can go unnoticed but are crucial to winning ball clubs.

For Rocchio, I think his upside is greater than just being a glue player.  If he can get everything to click, I could foresee a career year where he hits over .300 with 25 Home Runs and 30 steals while getting on base at a solid clip.  I wouldn’t even be shocked if we see a five-year run where he consistently puts up slightly less than those numbers over that course of time.

Brayan Rocchio is a great young player in a terrific organization.  I think it is going to be fun to watch him continue to mature and develop into a Big Leaguer.  He is the kind of guy that comes with fairly low risk due to his Baseball IQ and current skill set.  He also comes with a high enough ceiling that he is worth aggressively trying to acquire in deeper Dynasty leagues.



Current Grade: 50 Future Grade: 55


Make sure you bookmark our Fantasy Baseball page to consume all of our 2021 MLB content!

About Dave Eddy

Dave is the Director of Dynasty Baseball here at Fantasy Six Pack. He authors the Dynasty Baseball Rankings and is a credentialed member of the Media. Feel free to reach out to him anytime on twitter @CorporalEddy

Recommended for you

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.