Rosario, Friedrich included in first roster cuts

Rosario, Friedrich included in first roster cuts

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- The Rockies sent 14 players to Minor League camp on Sunday, including key catching prospect Wilin Rosario and left-hander Christian Friedrich, the team's top pick in the 2008 First-Year Player Draft.

Rosario has appeared in just two Cactus League game as he recovers from a right knee injury he suffered in August. Being sent from camp does not necessarily preclude a player from appearing in a Major League Spring Training game.

The 22-year-old Rosario was hitting .285 with a .342 on-base percentage through 73 games last year when he underwent surgery. Rosario appeared in the Futures Game during All-Star Weekend and is a member of the 40-man Major League roster.

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MLB.com ranked Rosario as the Rockies' No. 2 prospect, behind recent top pick Tyler Matzek, a left-handed pitcher who is in Minor League camp. Friedrich is listed at No. 3.

Other members of the 40-man Major League roster sent to Minor League camp are right-handed pitchers Bruce Billings and Casey Weathers, infielder Hector Gomez and outfielder Cole Garner. The Rockies also sent out left-handed pitcher Greg Smith, a member of the rotation at the start of last season who was a non-roster invitee to camp this year.

Right-handers Billy Buckner, Alan Johnson, Andrew Johnston and Adam Jorgensen, left-hander Keith Weiser, infielder Thomas Field and outfielder Tim Wheeler joined the group sent to the Minors.

Veteran catcher Chad Moeller left camp on Saturday. The Rockies have 48 players, including 13 non-roster invitees, remaining in Major League camp.