Astros: MLB’s Top 30 prospects list for 2020 shows changes

(Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
(Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images) /
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WEST PALM BEACH, FLORIDA – FEBRUARY 25: Garrett Stubbs #11 of the Houston Astros in action against the Miami Marlins during a Grapefruit League spring training game at FITTEAM Ballpark of The Palm Beaches on February 25, 2020 in West Palm Beach, Florida. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
WEST PALM BEACH, FLORIDA – FEBRUARY 25: Garrett Stubbs #11 of the Houston Astros in action against the Miami Marlins during a Grapefruit League spring training game at FITTEAM Ballpark of The Palm Beaches on February 25, 2020 in West Palm Beach, Florida. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images) /

Biggest Falls

Outfielder Ronnie Dawson had a tough 2019 season, and thus fell completely off the Top 30 after ranking at No. 16 last year. We recently looked at how he’s getting some good experience in big league Spring Training, but he’s got some work to do at the plate if he’s going to make it.

Outfielder/first baseman J.J. Matijevic also fell off the board after being ranked 17th last year. In 73 games at Double-A, he hit .246/.314/.423 with 21 doubles and nine homers. He offers very little in terms of baserunning or defense and served a 50-game suspension in 2019 for testing positive for a drug of abuse. He’s going to have to hit well if he’s to advance.

Right-handed pitcher Peter Solomon, ranked 18th last year, also left the rankings. He missed most of 2019 recovering from Tommy John surgery, but did make a pair of strong starts in High-A ball before getting hurt. He’s already 23 and will have to spend 2020 focusing on finishing his recovery and getting back into form.

Pitcher Tyler Ivey, also a righty, fell from No. 6 to No. 16. What probably factored into that is he only threw 52 innings in 2019 due to an elbow sprain and a suspension for having a foreign substance on his glove. He was plenty effective when he pitched, working to a 1.57 ERA in 46 Double-A innings. The 2017 third-round pick offers a good mix of pitches and could be a dark horse to reach the majors this year.

The team’s third-round pick in 2019, outfielder Jordan Brewer, fell from 7th to 14th in the rankings. He struggled in his brief introduction to pro ball, but the right-hander possesses plus power and speed and has the ability to be a solid defender in center field. His first full professional season in 2020 will give more of an indication of where he stands.

Finally, catcher Garrett Stubbs fell from 14th to 23rd, though I don’t think anyone minds that too much. He’s got a shot to make the Opening Day roster, and he profiles more as a versatile backup than a starting catcher due to his relatively small size and poor pitch framing metrics (albeit in a small sample size).

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