This year is the 25th year that Baseball America has come out with a top 100 prospects list. This year’s list was comprised of many members of the staff, so it doesn’t just reflect only one of Baseball America’s writers. You will notice that six Astros made this year’s Baseball America list, the third highest in the MLB. What’s interesting is that the #6 Astros prospect (according to Baseball America one month ago) did not make the list, yet #7 was included. Who and how? Find out below.
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6. Carlos Correa – ETA: 2016
The Astros hope to accelerate their rebuilding process after three brutal seasons; Correa should keep up with big numbers in the California League.
18. George Springer – ETA: 2014
The Astros likely won’t have any interest in calling up Springer until after May in order to delay his arbitration clock, so he has at least two solid months to learn to drive outside pitches the other way.
39. Mark Appel – ETA: 2015
Appel’s stuff suffered a bit from his post-draft layoff, so he didn’t knock anyone’s socks off in his pro debut. A full spring of preparation should allow the No. 1 overall pick’s velocity to return.
59. Michael Foltynewicz – ETA: 2015
Foltynewicz blossomed with the Astros’ tandem-starter system at Double-A. Greater pitch efficiency could help him get past six innings more than once, his 2013 total.
77. Lance McCullers Jr. – ETA: 2016
McCullers’ fastball and hard breaking ball are both premium pitches. His changeup has to progress to keep him a rotation option long-term.
82. Jonathan Singleton – ETA: 2014
Singleton really has to work on when to toke, er, take and when he’s too passive. Attacking fastballs he can hit is a must.
Who was the Astros #6 prospect that didn’t make the list? That was none other than Vincent Velasquez. With his exclusion, that makes four total top-100 lists so far this offseason that Velasquez has been left off of, while being included in just two. J.J. Cooper (Baseball America) was nice enough to answer my tweet asking why Velasquez was left off, even after being placed ahead of Singleton in the Astros top 10 list.
.@YoniPollak: Others in office like Singleton more. I’m a big Velasquez believer. Think he has a solid chance to start.
— JJ Cooper (@jjcoop36) February 20, 2014
Velasquez had a great season last year, but still has a lot too prove this season. With another great season under his belt, Velasquez can easily put himself on top-100 lists next offseason, and even likely earn a top-50 spot.
Stay tuned for more top-Astros prospect lists and top-100 MLB prospect lists.
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