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Astros Minor League Update: Lancaster JetHawks

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In today’s Astros Minor League update, we take a look at the Lancaster JetHawks.  If you have been following my coverage of the High-A affiliate, you know that I focus a lot on the core three hitters that have been there all season long; Brett Phillips, A.J. Reed, and J.D. Davis.

However, the newcomer Derek Fisher will be spotlighted this week.

Derek Fisher

Fisher gained notoriety while leading the University of Virginia deep into the College World Series in 2014. He was drafted 37th overall by Houston that year and by the time he started playing at Low-A Quad Cities – he was already a heralded prospect.

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In 39 games at that level, he hit .305 with six homers and eight steals while posting an OPS just south of .900. It was a flash of what he had shown in college and enough to get him promoted to High-A Lancaster.

In Fisher’s first game as a JetHawk, he almost caused Houston’s Twitter to break. He hit a solo homer in his first at-bat the followed that up with a grand slam in the second inning. Then, in the third, he unthinkably hit another slam.

Later in the game he came up again with the bases loaded and merely tripled.  Fisher finished his first game with Lancaster going 4-for-6 with three home runs, one triple, and 12 RBI – Wow!

Batting second in the order behind Brett Phillips and front of J.D. Davis, he has a nice cushion to settle into. While we can expect good power from Fisher, it is the combination of power and speed from the left side of the plate that makes scouts and Astros brass drool. He has also stolen four bags already with Lancaster in just seven games.

In a quote from a conversation with Phillips by CTH editor Eric Huysman, Phillips was asked what it was like to hit behind Fisher the night he debuted at Lancaster. His response was classic Phillips, “The dude looked like Barry Bonds last night, no Joke!”

“The dude looked like Barry Bonds last night, no Joke!” – Brett Phillips on Fisher’s debut.

Of Course, we know that Brett Phillips can also provide power and speed.  In the last week, he has homered but ultimately struggled with only three total hits in that time.

As a fan of Phillips, I am beginning to fear that he could be a centerpiece in an Astros trade for a front line starter.

A.J. Reed has continued his upward arch on the season as he is now at 15 homers and 48 RBI in 52 games. He is 11 for his last 24, but I expect him to make it to Double-A Corpus Christi in the coming weeks.

J.D. Davis, on the other hand, is getting warm again lately. His last week has produced two homers and nine RBI while raising his season average to .281.

This top four should all be progressing to the next level soon, but are all considered trade pieces.

Next: Are the Houston Astros in Pursuit of a Starter?

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