Drafting man. What can we say? It's tough and with each passing year you get a chance to criticize your General Manager's selection. It's not fair because despite some opinions, General Managers generally take the best player on their draft board with the best information they have at the time, but there lies the fault. Every draft board is different and each different plot on the board that changes brings a pick of chance and risk. What if the Rays had Pedro Alvarez or Eric Hosmer above Tim Beckham? What if the Diamondbacks had Matt Harvey above Barrett Loux?
When you draft a player, you gamble. Simple as that. No team wins the lottery every time and not every draft pick is good every time (despite what Cardinals fans think).
So on June 7th 2010 the Royals selected Cal State Fullerton Shortstop Christian Colon with the fourth overall pick, and on June 30th 2014 the Royals promoted said player to the major leagues 2,113 minor league plate appearances later.
Colon debuted professionally in A+ Wilmington where he slashed .278/.326/.376 for a 98 wOBA+. That was good enough to see him ranked 51st on Baseball America's pre-2011 Top-100 rankings and 88th on Baseball Prospectus'.
This would be the first and only time Colon would find his name on a Top-100 list.
Seeing a promotion to AA in 2011 he would struggle with a .257/.325/.342 before being injured and demoted to the Rookie League Saguaros team in early September.
Fate would repeat itself as Colon would be injured again in 2012 during June on what I remember being a toe injury. He would miss a months action before reporting back to the Saguaros for a short rehab in July then returning to Northwest Arkansas and then seeing a brief late season stint in Omaha. Overall his 2012 line across three levels was .301/.376/.413.
2013 and 2014 would basically be the same years. Opened season in AAA and hit for a good average, good OBP, but showed little power as he hit 27 doubles and 13 home runs in 932 plate appearances in all his Omaha time.
That's basically what Christian Colon brings to the game. Good contact/plate discipline, average on base percentage, but doesn't have enough power to power whatever small electric object you want to use for this analogy.
When he makes his professional debut he'll join 13 other first rounders from 2010 to do so. The best being Chris Sale right now, but Bryce Harper has some more youth on his side and the second most (potential) talent in all of baseball (if you ask me).
All Colon would need to do is put up 0.1 rWAR to be tied for the 8th best player from the 2010 first round with Taij Walker.
That's either a happy/good or sad/bad thing depending on your perspective. Sad that the other players from this draft are going to be better players than Colon, especially some taken after him, by a mile, but perhaps good that 0.1 rWAR is good enough for the 8th best player from the first round that had 50 picks.
For some reason Colon reminds me of this quote.
I don't know
half of youChristian Colon half as well as I should like; and I like less than half of youChristian Colon half as well as youhe deserves
Colon has always put up strong numbers if you don't care about power as much you should, and he's been younger than the league average at every stop (except his rehab stint in Rookie League). It gets a little iffy being a 25 year old in AAA, but he did reach Omaha just two years after being drafted...which is nice.
He was once an enticing prospect with a high floor and could play you some solid shortstop defense. Maybe there's some sort of cromulent player in there somewhere, but one wonders where he'll play for now as his two primary positions, SS/2B, are filled at the major league level.
ZiPS projected him as having a .256/.303/.335 74 wRC+ in 121 games good for 0.7 fWAR this year and Oliver matched that WAR projection.
PECOTA lists his Top-5 comparable players as:
I've never heard of any of those guys...
Despite your opinion of Colon, he made a very wise decision to play baseball and it's paid off. Worst case for him is even if he never steps foot in a major league batters box or steps onto the MLB field other than warmups or the national anthem... he made ~$3,000,000 for a couple seasons of work.