With a couple of outfielders on the mend minor leaguer Collin DeLome is seeing playing time in big league games this spring. Jordan Schafer (hand) will be out for about a week and Jack Cust (right elbow tendinitis) played in a minor league game on Sunday. Cust had a hit yesterday and threw out a base runner on the back field. The veteran is 0-20 in big league action this spring and has only appeared as a designated hitter.
DeLome is a native of Beaumont and attended Lamar University, where he set several school records playing for Jim Gilligan’s Cardinals. After his junior year (2007) DeLome was a fifth round draft pick of the Astros. DeLome is a speedster and has shown some occasional pop in his bat during his five seasons in the minors. Last year DeLome played at AAA Oklahoma City and produced a .256/.317/.420 slash line in 89 games. Unfortunately, strikeouts have been an issue for the 26 year-old left-handed hitter. DeLome has fanned at a 30% clip during his minor league career.
DeLome has been successful on 58 of 77 stolen base attempts (75%) and has 34 career triples. Speed is his strong suit and DeLome is proficient at all three outfield positions. After hitting 20 homers at AA in 2009 and 17 at AAA in 2010 DeLome totaled only seven last season. DeLome doesn’t figure to make the team out of Spring Training but could be a short term option in centerfield if Schafer’s hand injury lingers longer than expected. Schafer’s x-rays showed no broken bones and he is expected to miss about a week.