January 21, 2009 8:01 PM
Carlos Gonzalez update
Outfielder Carlos Gonzalez is scheduled to fly from Venezuela on Thursday and arrive in Denver on Thursday night. So he'll miss all but the final day of the Rockies three-week winter development program Friday and then be here this weekend to participate in the club's first fanfest, which is being held for some season ticket holders.
Save for the fact Gonzalez, 23, acquired from Oakland in the Matt Holliday trade in November, didn't have the chance to spend an appreciable amount of indoctrination time in Coors Field and around any Rockies players or officials, his absence from the winter development probably worked to his advantage.
That's because Gonzalez was playing with Zulia in the Venezuelan Winter League playoffs. In 14 playoff games, Gonzalez hit .289 (13-for-45) with three doubles, two homers and six RBI. Strikeouts were an alarming problem last season for Gonzalez, but in the playoffs he had nearly as many walks (11) as strikeouts (13) as he compiled a .439 on-base percentage and .489 slugging percentage.
Gonzalez has the potential to be a multi-faceted player and has some superb tools but home run power likely isn't going to be one of his assets. He has a line-drive swing, rather than one with natural loft, but that certainly won't preclude Gonzalez from being a productive hitter, especially at Coors Field.