Astros Minors Update: Lancaster JetHawks


Astros high-A minor league team, the Lancaster JetHawks, looked a little different this past week.  Following the All-Star game in which several Houston organization farmhands starred, the JetHawks returned to business Thursday with a different look.  Yes, the heart of the lineup remained intact, but the leadoff man will no longer be star outfielder Brett Phillips.

The 21-year old posted a stellar .320/15/53 slash line over 66 games as the spark plug for Lancaster’s offense.  Finally, he was promoted to double-A Corpus Christi last week.  Phillips was notified following his 1-2 appearance with two runs batted as a member of the California League All-Star team.  This falls in line with General Manager Jeff Luhnow’s mantra of letting players win and experience success at all levels before their promotions.  Brett Phillips certainly earned his promotion and will be missed by this reporter of the JetHawks updates.

Brett Phillips and A.J. Reed are a good investment for the Astros and collectors alike

There was another JetHawk in the California League All-Star lineup.  Hot-hitting A.J. Reed posted a 1-3 night in the battle of top prospects.  The slugger then returned to Lancaster and went 7-15 with a homer and four r.b.i. over the last four games.  If you thought Brett Phillips had great numbers, then Reed will leave you drooling.  He’s hitting .338 with 19 homers and 70 r.b.i. in just 72 games.  That’s good for a .441 OBP and .612 slugging or a 1.053 OPS.  He’s now, unquestionably the best player on this club and may have worked to eclipse Phillips prior to his departure.

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Lancaster did not only lose players to promotion, but also gained talent after their All-Star break.  Big catcher Jacob Nottingham was advanced from low-A Quad Cities to the JetHawks.  In his first half, he posted a .326 average with ten homers and a .931 OPS.  It will be interesting to see where he ends up in the Lancaster lineup.

The JetHawks also acquired 6’6″ right-handed pitcher Akeem Bostick via promotion from Quad Cities.  The 20-year-old arm has posted a 1.71 ERA and a 0.85 WHIP over his 2015 to this point.  While his ERA will likely not remain that low after a few starts in the hitter-friendly California League, scouts and management will be watching his stuff and location more than the numbers as they usually do with their arms at this level.

Derek Fisher is 5 for his last 12 and has his batting average hovering around .276 since joining the JetHawks.  The awesome young talent has been streaky since his promotion, but he’ll be a focal point of this team with Phillips moving out of that same outfield.

Next: The Houston Astros should absolutely trade for Cole Hamels

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