The Corpus Christi Hooks are cooling down a bit after a hot stretch in April.
While the 1-3 record so far in May is a disappointing way to start the month, there is still many things to be excited about with this team. One of the rising prospects on the team is catcher Garrett Stubbs who continues to prove his value year after year. Now back from injury, he is contributing to the Hooks at a high level and will be exciting to watch as he improves even more.
The Astros selected Garrett Stubbs in the 8th round of the 2015 draft. He has consistently been a great hitter and defensive catcher during his three years so far in the minor leagues. On the defensive side, Stubbs is excellent at throwing out attempted base stealers, catching them nearly 50% of the time. As far as hitting goes, he has a career average close to .300 and a career OPS in the .800s, showing that he is much more than a defensive-minded catcher. He seems to improve each and every year and finds new ways to contribute to the team.
This season Stubbs has only played in 13 games after starting the year on the DL. Since his return, however, he is hitting .300 with three homers already and only striking out six times. In the field, he has thrown out three of the five runners attempting to steal on him so far. Though the sample size is still fairly small, his great play has been very encouraging for the Hooks.
Strengths and Weaknesses
Garrett Stubbs is a player with many strengths and not very many weaknesses. One of his main strengths is the ability to limit the strikeouts. As a catcher, this ability is quite rare and will be useful for him once he reaches the majors. For his career, Stubbs has struck out 59 times in 139 career games, an incredible feat. He also has a great average, on-base percentage, and can hit for some power. He is all around a great prospect who will hopefully help the Astros one day.
The only weakness that Stubbs has is his body size. He is undersized for a catcher at 5’10 and 175 lbs. Health has already troubled him so far this season and he might want to bulk up before reaching the Astros.
Catching is an interesting position in the Astros organization. Currently, Brian McCann is the primary catcher with Evan Gattis getting looks behind the plate as well. However, Gattis also serves as the DH occasionally which creates the problem of not having a backup catcher. Garrett Stubbs can potentially slide into the backup catcher role in the near future, allowing Gattis to be the primary DH when Beltran retires (or before then, even). Wherever Stubbs ends up with the Astros, he will help the team out greatly.
**Statistics courtesy of MiLB.com**