Seven, I repeat, seven Astros are now ranked in the top 100 of MLB prospects.
MLB Pipeline recently released their midseason Prospect Rankings. And for once, the Astros actually had a prospect land the coveted number one ranking in Alex Bregman.
Of course, Bregman was just promoted to the majors a few days ago, but he is still put up a ridiculous stat line of .333/.373/.641 in the Astros minor league system this year. It’s clear to see why he made the jump his 22nd ranking last year to first this year.
The next Astros prospect on the list is A.J. Reed, who comes in at 38.
Reed was recently demoted back to Fresno after a brief in Houston that saw him hit .156/.250/.289 in 52 plate appearances. However, he has been a force at the Triple-A level this year with a .891 OPS. So it is clear to see why he is still rated highly in the minor league system.
Francis Martes comes in just right after Reed at number 41 on the mid season list. Arguably the Astros top pitching prospect, Martes has shown plenty of promise as a 20-year old at the Double-A level. Even though his ERA is in the high-3’s, his talent is undeniable.
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There is a bit of a drought before you see another Astros prospect crack the list. You have to eventually reach number 63 to see that Kyle Tucker, younger brother of fan favorite Preston Tucker, made the list. The 19-year old outfielder has posted a .722 OPS in 85 games with Single-A Quad Cities. And even though his power (.379 SLG) has not fully developed yet, his tools still carry potential.
The three remaining Astros prospects on the list happen in pretty quick succession. At number 85 is none other than first-round pick Forrest Whitely, who has just made his mark in the Astros system.
After Whitely, we go directly to number 86, David Paulino. The 22-year old owns a a stellar 1.77 ERA over 61 innings between the Rookie and Single-A levels in the Astros system. Paulino has really burst onto the scene over the past calendar year as one of Houston’s top arms in the minors.
The last Astros prospect to appear on the list is another promising pitcher, Joseph Musgrove, at number 87. The right handed pitcher got off to a great start this season with the Corpus Christi Hooks (0.34 ERA in 26.1 innings) before his promotion to the Fresno Grizzlies. And while he hasn’t been quite as lights out with Fresno, his seven walks compared to 57 strikeouts in Triple-A is downright impressive. It is easy to see why he is projected to be the next starter called up by the Astros at some point in the future.
Overall, the Astros rebuilding process has been viewed as a success recently. With the major league team now performing well for much of the past calendar year, and the minors continue to churn out top prospects, the Astros appear to be set for a run towards consistent contention in the upcoming years.
**Statistics provided by Baseball-Reference**