Tyler Colvin the cubs 2006 first round draft pick, has been hitting the weights this winter, working out with the Cubs strength and conditioning coach Tim Buss. He added 25 pounds this winter according to Tim Sheridan the Cubs P.A. announcer and blogger, Colvin was listed at 190 pounds last year. He filled out his 6 foot 3 inch frame, he now weighs about 215 pounds.
Colvin is on the teams 40 man roster and made his brief major league debut last year, getting an rbi on a sac-fly in his first major league at bat. He had 3 hits in 17 at bats. Last year at AA Tennessee he hit .300/.334/.524 with 14 home runs in 307 at bats.
Will this added muscle turn into more home runs? Will he take his game to the next level this year? What impact will Rudy Jaramillo have on him? Will he ever show he was worth a first round draft pick after 4 years in the minor leagues?
Colvin is not known for his patience at the plate, and needs more time in the minors, the Cubs brass don't feel he is quite ready. With a log jam in the Cubs outfield, he would most likely be a backup, and that would stunt his development and he needs to show he can hit major league pitching.
The Cubs don't have an opening in the outfield until after next year when Fukodome becomes a free agent. Soriano will be with the Cubs through 2014(ouch!!!), and Marlon Byrd will be with the club for 3 years, barring a trade, he is only one without a no trade clause. The Cubs also have Xavier Nady signed to a one year deal, if he shows he can stay healthy, he could possibly take over right field. I hope he does, and losing his starting job Fukodome waves his no trade clause. He would be tough to trade though unless the Cubs eat a healthy chunk of his contract. Sam Fuld, Micah Hoffpauir, Bryan LaHair, Brad Snyder, Kevin Millar, Chad Tracy, James Adduci, Bobby Scales and Matt Camp will also be at spring training trying to make the Cubs big league roster.
Even if Colvin shows he is ready at some point this year or next, there isn't really a place for him on the Cubs, or most of the other minor league options the Cubs have. For any of these guys to get significant playing time in the majors, significant moves need to be made(saying good bye to Fukodome and Soriano is unlikely).
Tyler Colvin may turn out to be a trade chip, a bust, or just be blocked and waste away in the minors. There will be a lot of tough decisions for the cubs to make through spring training. Who will make the team? Who will be cut?