DENVER -- The Rockies drafted for athletic ability when they selected Forrest Wall, a second baseman from Orangewood (Florida) Christian School, with the second of their three picks -- 35th overall, in Competitive Balance Round A -- on Thursday night in the MLB First-Year Player Draft.
Wall, 18, was one of the top high school players in Florida throughout his career. According to scouts, he has well above average speed and a consistent swing from the left side.
The Rockies also selected a Denver native, University of Evansville left-hander Kyle Freeland, with the eighth overall pick, and Phoenix Brophy College Prep right-hander Ryan Castellani in the second round with the 48th overall pick.
A torn labrum in Wall's right shoulder in 2011, which required surgery, led to a move to second base from shortstop. He also suffered a left-shoulder separation that cost him a few games this year, but he still led Orangewood Christian to the finals of its state tournament.
Wall displayed his surprising power during a charity event in February, when he outhomered Blue Jays slugger Jose Bautista.
Wall has signed with North Carolina and is one of several players from the talent-rich Orlando area weighing whether to sign professionally or play collegiate ball.
"They've got to weigh out the college experience, cost of college and what kind of monetary investment a team will give," Orangewood Christian coach Scott Hilinski recently told the Orlando Sentinel newspaper.
Thomas Harding is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Hardball in the Rockies, and follow him on Twitter @harding_at_mlb. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.