Astros’ new MLB Pipeline ranking comes with major shuffle

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MLB Pipeline has released their new prospect rankings, as the Astros continue to sit at the bottom.

It is no secret. The Houston Astros‘ farm system has been one of the most low ranked systems by any news outlet. But with another season nearing an end, MLB Pipeline has updated all major-league teams including where the Astros now stand.

To start, the organization now has zero prospects among the Top 100, as their sole representative, Forrest Whitley, has fallen out. The right-hander was shut down after Tommy John surgery this season, as a slew of concerns have halted his progressions over the years. In March, there were a few adjustments to the Top 30, but these did not include the effects from the 2021 MLB Draft.

In 2020, Whitley was still the top dog, as the right-hander was eyed to make his major-league debut, but now catcher Korey Lee, who is on the injured list with a minor oblique strain, has made the jump to being the top prospect. Jairo Solis, 40-man roster member, was also a member of the Top 10, but an injury also pushed him out of climbing through the system in 2021.

The Current Top 10:

Pedro Leon remains second among all Astros’ prospects, while the right-hander is currently nursing a fractured finger in Triple-A. The Cuban standout made the switch from the outfield to shortstop, but his throwing inconsistencies are holding back his arm strength at the moment.

For another shortstop, Jeremy Pena remains in the Top Five, as he is currently on a rehab assignment with the FCL Astros. The right-hander sustained a wrist injury in April, before the start of the minor-league season. He will likely join the Sugar Land Skeeters, when fully healthy.

Among the bottom five are three outfielders in completely different situations. Tyler Whitaker, the Astros’ first draft selection this year, is a high school product currently in the FCL. The outfielder could work on some hitting mechanics with a short load on his swing, before making a jump late into the minor-league season. Then, there is Colin Barber, who had season-ending shoulder surgery in July.

Some may question why Jake Meyers is on this list, as the right-handed hitter is now with the Astros. Well, this list factors in all minor-league numbers from this season, while Meyers was the top Triple-A outfielder on the verge of a promotion. At some point in the near future, Meyers will graduate from this list.

More from Prospects

Alex Santos has been lights out in Low-A Fayetteville, while he was the first selection for the organization in the 2020 MLB Draft. The right-hander currently has a 3.15 ERA over 34.1 innings with a 10.75 K/9 at 19-years-old. Rounding out the Top 10 is infielder Joe Perez, the only true infielder to make the Top 10.

A few other players to note are #14 Yanier Diaz (catcher), who was acquired in the Myles Straw trade and #25 Freudis Nova (infielder), who was ranked second in 2020 and is currently on the 40-man roster.

The Astros’ have been outed as a franchise with a weak farm system, but for MLB Pipeline, they haven’t released their organization rankings yet. Houston stood 29th in March with the Washington Nationals trailing, a team that retooled at the deadline.

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