The Astros minors’ Lancaster JetHawks have had some explosive players throughout the 2015 season. However, what J.D. Davis has done recently may be one of the most impressive runs by any of the stars that have lit up the California League. He has been joined by a red-hot Alex Bregman as well. While the team is only 5-5 in the last ten games, there are some great things happening at the Houston Astros’ high-A affiliate.
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Davis has exploded over his last ten games, hitting seven homers and driving in 17 runs. He is 14 for 39 over that stretch, raising his season slash line to .283/22/88. The problem for the young third baseman is that Colin Moran has been just as hot for the Corpus Christi Hooks of late. This blocks any potential promotion for Davis in 2015 and keeps him from reuniting with corner infield mate, A.J. Reed.
J.D. Davis in his River Bandit days – photo courtesy of Rich Guill
Davis hasn’t been the only one enjoying California League pitching. Shortstop Bregman has gotten comfortable and is 15-37 in last eight games. After a slow start as a JetHawk after his promotion from Quad Cities, the first ranked Astros prospect is up to a .283 average with a .317 on-base percentage. Those numbers are not eye-popping, but compared to a week ago, they are respectable. I expect Bregman to continue his consistent hitting and see that average climb over .300 with a high on-base percentage. Look out! The kid may be about to catch fire.
Alex Bregman -Mandatory Credit: Rich Gill-@QCBanditPhotog
We love to see our big prospects doing well down on the farm. That is why it is troubling to see Derek Fisher having less than stellar time over the last month or so. The highly touted outfielder, who may have made the Brett Phillips trade a little easier to swallow, is just 7 for his last 39. Fisher’s average has now dropped to .252 with a .329 OBP at Lancaster in 61 games. He has a unique combination of power and speed, but we haven’t seen either in August to this point. Batting third in the lineup and getting protection from Davis in the order, it is surprising to see the former University of Virginia star struggle. Hopefully, he’ll turn the corner soon.
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The California League is not all about hitting. Well, maybe it is. That is why the performance of RHP Francis Martes is standing out. Still just 19 years old, Martes has posted a very nice (considering the environment) 3.86 era with 25 Ks in 21 innings. His record improved to 2-1 after Tuesday’s start where he gave up 0 earned runs over six innings while striking out 3. Just one more talented arm on the farm for General Manager Jeff Luhnow.
The JetHawks always seem to be loaded with talent despite losing players to promotion. This time is no different. Stay tuned to Climbing Tal’s Hill to check in on the JetHawks and all the affiliates of the Houston Astros.