27-year old righty swingers Chris Nelson and Jordan Pacheco are going to duke it out this spring for the starting job at 3B for the Rockies in 2013. Nelson played in 111 games for the Rockies last year and he was 104 of 345 (.301 avg, .810 OPS) with 45 runs scored, 9 homers, 53 RBIs and 2 stolen bases. Nelson played in 92 games (68 starts) for the Rockies at 3B last year and he had 12 errors there while showing poor range. Nelson has played in 191 games in his first three years with the Rockies and he is 156 of 550 (.284 avg, .754 OPS) with 72 runs scored, 13 homers, 69 RBIs and 6 stolen bases. Pacheco played in 132 games for the Rockies last year and he was 147 of 475 (.309 avg, .762 OPS) with 51 runs scored, 5 homers, 54 RBIs and 7 stolen bases. He played in 82 games (80 starts) at 3B for the Rockies last year and he had 9 errors there while showing pretty poor range. Pacheco has now played in 153 games in his first two years in the majors and he is 171 of 559 (.306 avg, .751 OPS) with 56 runs scored, 7 homers, 68 RBIs and 7 stolen bases. 24-year old lefty swinging Ryan Wheeler will be a longshot to win the starting job this spring. Wheeler played in 50 games for the D-Backs last year (his first taste of the majors) and he was 26 of 109 (.239 avg, .634 OPS) with 11 runs scored, 1 homer, 10 RBIs and 1 stolen base. Wheeler played in 23 games (21 starts) at 3B last year and he had 2 errors and showed pretty poor range there. Wheeler also played in 93 games in AAA-ball last year and he was 127 of 362 (.351 avg, .960 OPS) with 56 runs scored, 15 homers, 90 RBIs and 3 stolen bases.
PROJECTED GRADE FOR THE THIRD BASEMEN IN 2013: B-