For as much as has been made about how the Houston Astros' farm system isn't what it used to be, they still seem to find a way to continue to add talent to what is already a pretty loaded roster. Just recently, Yainer Diaz was a September call-up in 2022, and he has quickly established himself as Houston's catcher of the future.
The Astros have several prospects who currently could find their way into the team's plans in 2024 ($). Spencer Arrighetti could get a look if Houston needs another starting pitche,r and Forrest Whitley is all but a lock to get a look in the Astros' bullpen. On the position player side, Jacob Melton, Joey Loperfido, Kenedy Corona, and Will Wagner all have a chance to get some playing time if the need arises.
However, one Astros prospect that hasn't gotten enough attention who could force his way into the conversation is outfielder Quincy Hamilton, who is only just now ($) starting to get some recognition thanks in part to a Q&A that The Athletic's Chandler Rome recently did on the Astros' prospect options this coming season.
Astros prospect Quincy Hamilton is a sleeper pick to make the big leagues in 2024
In a farm system that already has a bunch of quality outfield prospects like Melton, Loperfido, Corona, Colin Barber, and Luis Baez, Hamilton has gotten lost in the shuffle at times. Some of that may be due to the fact that he is a smaller guy at 5'10" who was just a fifth-round pick out of Wright State back in 2021. Hamilton also got hurt last year and had to have core muscle surgery, which cost him a bunch of time in 2023.
However, when he is on the field, he is a difference-maker, as he can run, hit for power, and get on base at a high clip. Hamilton has seen significant playing time at all three positions in the outfield in the minors, and he posted a .280/.396/.461 slash line in 2022, with 17 homers and 27 stolen bases across three levels of the minors. His OPS dipped in his injury-shortened 2023 season to .792, but he still hit 13 homers in just 72 games in Double-A and Triple-A.
Ultimately, prospect rankings and outsider guesses matter a whole lot less than fans tend to think. Houston is likely to be well aware of what Hamilton brings to the table heading into 2024 spring training. If he demonstrates that he is fully recovered and shows out this spring, don't be surprised if calls to give him an opportunity in the big leagues get louder and louder, given his versatility and well-rounded offensive game.