Times are changing in Houston, and itâ€™s starting with the farm system. Jeff Luhnow has been on the job as the Houston Astros General Manager for just over a year and has placed an emphasis on continuing to rebuild the minor league system and create a pipeline of talent to sustain success at the major league level.
Moving forward, the system needs to continue to develop a lot of the bigger prospects that still remain in the lower to middle levels of the minor leagues and two to three of these prospects could end up in the major leagues by seasonâ€™s end. The Astros also hold the number one pick this coming June in which new scouting director, Mike Elias will make his first ever draft pick and attempt to score big.
Â 1 | JONATHAN SINGLETON
Singleton is arguably the top first base prospects in all of baseball and put up a monster season in AA Corpus Christi of the Texas League. He was twice the Texas League Player of the Week, a mid-season and post-season Texas League All-Star, a Futureâ€™s Game selection, an Arizona Fall League participant, and AFL Player of the Week. Not a bad list of honors and definitely deserving as he hit .284/.396/.497 in his age 20 season. As with any young prospect, power is the last to develop and started to show up this year with career highs in home runs (21), triples (4), and doubles (27).
Singleton has always hit for average and drawn more than his fair share of walks. He has great plate discipline but can struggle with making contact with off-speed pitches at times. However, the body is thick and strong and power is coming along nicely. He is athletic enough to be at least average defensively at first, but there are a few scouts who still wonder if he will stick there if his body continues to develop and becomes a detriment to his mobility.
The most recent concern comes on the heel of a 50 game suspension for testing positive for substance of abuse, which has been suggested to be marijuana. He will still be able to participate in Spring Training but will lose a significant amount of time. But, the biggest concern is maturity moving forward. However, a left handed power hitter who is able to hit for average and get on-base is premium talent despite defensive limitations.
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