The Astros’ Triple-A affiliate Round Rock Express have played their first week of Pacific Coast League play and a few players have hit the ground running.
The Houston Astros have a deep pool of talent in their minor league system. The AAA affiliate Round Rock Express is a great example of that depth. Yordan Alvarez, Forrest Whitley, and Kyle Tucker are just a few of the familiar names with the Express, but there are also some not-so-familiar players on the team that have started off with a bang. Let’s take a look at some of the players that have shined in the first week of play.
Yordan Alvarez OF:
The 21-year-old Cuban native started the 2018 season in AAA, but after not performing at his usual level of play went back down to AA halfway through the season. Alvarez was a non-roster invitee to this season’s Spring Training and got quite a lot of playing time and had a respectable showing, prompting his placement back at the AAA level to start the season.
Alvarez, Houston’s #3 prospect, has demonstrated early on in the season that he more than deserves to be playing at this level. He has played in all eight games and has a slash line of .346/.469/1.000. In the nine hits that Alvarez has collected, seven are extra-base hits with five of those home runs. He has scored seven runs and knocked in ten RBIs.
Jack Mayfield 2B:
Mayfield has been in the Astros minor league system for seven years. The last two season with the AA and AAA he’s been consistently productive hitting .337 in 2017 and .324 last season. Both years he had 60+ runs and RBIs and double-digit home runs. This season Mayfield has been on fire batting .417/.464/.833 with seven runs and six RBIs in the seven games he’s played.
Myles Straw OF:
The 24-year-old outfielder is on Houston’s 40-man roster and got to play in ten games with the big league team in 2018 and did well. He also had a very productive Spring Training with the club this year hitting .378 and collecting four stolen bases in 45 at-bats. Straw hasn’t let up at Round Rock with a .323 average, five extra-base hits, and four SBs.
Brady Rodgers SP:
Rodgers, 28-year-old, is also on the 40-man roster and has been in the system since 2012. The native Texan appeared in five games with the Astros back in 2016 and got beat up to the tune of a 15.12 ERA. Putting that behind him, Rodgers has begun the season with the Express with a 0.82 ERA allowing one run in 11 innings striking out 11 batters and only walking four.
These are just a few of the players that are showing promise in this young season, but they are the ones that really stand out from the rest after the first week. There are a couple top prospects, namely Forrest Whitley and Kyle Tucker, that are starting out a little slowly, but there’s a lot of season left to play. We’ll keep tabs and report on the progress of all the prospects throughout the season, so stay tuned.