Houston Astros MiLB Promotions That Should Happen
With the minor league All-Star games coming up and the 2016 MLB Draft in the books, it is time for the Astros to make some moves in the minors. There definitely some deserving players ready to move up.
For the purpose of this article I won’t necessarily focus on the corresponding moves, just guys needing to be moved up. With a flurry of moves come some prospects being released or designated for assignment, I will leave that part up to the Astros.
Promoted to Houston Astros (MLB) from Fresno Grizzlies (AAA)
James Hoyt, RHP – Hoyt has been a dominant relief pitcher for the Grizzlies this year. While the Astros bullpen has pitched well, Hoyt would make them even better. This season Hoyt has a 1.93 ERA with 14 SV, 14 BB/58 K in just 32.2 innings. That is good for 16.0 K/9, which easily leads all of Astros minor leagues.
AJ Reed, 1B – Reed is one of the Astros best prospects. While he hasn’t dominated AAA yet, he has shown some signs recently that he is heating up. He also dealt with an injury earlier that slowed him a bit. In 52 games he has 17 2B, 8 HR, 30 RBI with a .818 OPS.
Brady Rodgers, RHP – There isn’t any room in the rotation or the bullpen but if there is someone deserving of a promotion it is Rodgers. He has dominated the PCL this season with a 2.90 ERA and 8 BB/66 K in 68.1 innings. His last 7 starts he has a 1.90 ERA with 6 BB/52 K in 47.2 innings.
Promoted to Fresno Grizzlies (AAA) from Corpus Christi Hooks (AA)
Alex Bregman, SS – The #2 overall pick from 2015 has destroyed the Texas League. In 54 games he has 13 2B, 14 HR, 44 RBI, 31 BB/21 K with a .996 OPS. He doesn’t have anything left to prove in AA and could use another test with AAA pitching.
Teoscar Hernandez, OF – Teoscar is playing in his 3rd season with the Hooks but has put it together this season. His walks are up and strikeouts are down. He is hitting .313, a career high, with 17 2B, 24 SB in 61 games for the Hooks. With Fresno’s offense struggling, Bregman and Teoscar would provide a huge boost.
Brendan McCurry, RHP – Relief pitcher acquired in the trade that sent Lowrie to the A’s (the second time). He doesn’t have overpowering stuff but is running through Texas League hitters. He has a 2.27 ERA with 8 BB/50 K in 39.2 innings. He has also converted 13 saves for the Hooks.
Keegan Yuhl, RHP – If Rodgers was promoted to Houston, they would need another starter to take his spot. Yuhl has been a steal for the Astros. The 24 year old is 6-1 with a 2.34 ERA in 61.2 innings. He was a 35th round pick in 2014 and has already defied the odds.
Promoted to Corpus Christi Hooks (AA) from Lancaster Jethawks (A+)
Garrett Stubbs, C – Stubbs is a great defensive catcher who has produced with the bat this season. He is playing in a good hitter’s league but also has a great walk to strikeout ratio (23 BB/28 K). He is already 23 years old but has started to establish himself as the Astros top catching prospect.
Bobby Boyd, OF – Another college draftee, Boyd has done will in Lancaster. He is hitting .326 with 27 SB in 46 games. The promotion of Teoscar to AAA would open up a spot for him and allow him to bat leadoff for the Hooks. He could walk a bit more but is striking out less than he did last season.
Joshua James, RHP – James is 23 years old, so about league average for the California League. This season he has struck out 66 in 50.2 innings with a 3.02 ERA. He is ready for a new challenge and would add another talented starter to the Hooks rotation.
Promoted to Lancaster Jethawks (A+) from Quad Cities River Bandits (A)
Kyle Tucker, OF – Tucker suffered a bit of a set back with an injury recently but it doesn’t appear to be serious. If healthy, the 19 year old outfielder is deserving of a promotion. This season he is hitting .306 with 32 RBI, 23 SB in 56 games while playing all three outfield positions.
It is possible some of these may happen after the minor league All-Star break passes. Even with the recent trades and promotions, we can still see the Astros farm system is loaded with talent.
**Photo Credit: Erick Sifuentes**