Who is the Astros’ MiLB MVP of 2016?
The next award in this series is the Astros Minor League Most Valuable Player. Last year A.J. Reed had a phenomenal season and was selected by the Astros as the offensive player of the year (minors). It is almost a guarantee that multiple guys on this list will have an impact in Houston next season. Once again, y’all will be allowed to vote. Here are the candidates.
Alex Bregman, SS
Bregman was drafted by the Astros with the #2 overall pick in the 205 draft. Bregman had a solid showing his draft year hitting .294 in 66 games. Bregman started the 2016 season with Corpus Christi and would dominate. He had 5 HR, 13 RBI in his first 10 games of the season and hitting .297 with 42 BB/26 SO in Double-A before being promoted to AAA. In 18 AAA games he hit .333 with 6 HR, 15 RBI earning a call-up to the Astros. He started slow with Houston but really got hot and hit .260 with 8 HR, 32 RBI in 47 games. Unfortunately, a hamstring injury has caused him to miss some time but he had a great year at every level.
2016 Stats: 80 G, .306 BA/.406 OBP/.580 SLG, 22 2B, 20 HR, 61 RBI, 7 SB, 47 BB/38 SO(AA/AAA)
Ramon Laureano, OF
After being drafted in 2014 he had a solid 2015 season hitting .265 with 15 2B, 4 HR in 76 games for Quad Cities. He started the 2016 season with Lancaster and put up great numbers hitting .317 with 10 HR, 60 RBI, 33 SB in 80 games. Some believed this to be a Lancaster mirage but he hit even better in AA with a .981 OPS. Laureano might be the breakout prospect of the season and has definitely put his name on some top prospect lists. Laureano went on to hit .471 with 2 2B, 2 BB in four playoff games for the Hooks.
2016 Stats: 116 G, .319 BA/.428 OBP/.528 SLG, 28 2B, 7 3B, 15 HR, 73 RBI, 43 SB, 70 BB/119 SO
J.D. Davis, 3B
Davis was drafted by the Astros in the 3rd round of the 2014 MLB draft. He showed off power early on with 13 HR in 73 games while hitting .293. Davis spent the full 2015 season with Lancaster and finished wit 26 HR, 101 RBI in 120. He played this season with Corpus and once again showed off good power hitting 34 2B and 23 HR. Davis has a bit of swing and miss but the power is legit and he has a career average of .282. He was a steady producer for Corpus all season long.
2016 Stats: 126 G, .268 BA/.334 OBP/.485 SLG, 34 2B, 23 HR, 81 RBI, 45 BB/143 SO
Jason Martin, OF
Martin has seemed to fly under the radar a bit since being drafted out of high school in 2013. He played rookie ball for a couple seasons before making his full season debut last year with Quad Cities. In that season he hit .270 in 105 games. Many expected Martin to be a “breakout” prospect and he has done just that. This season he hit .270 with 23 HR, 75 RBI in 110 games as a 20 year old. He should start next season in Corpus and really has a chance to start moving up prospect lists.
2016 Stats: 110 G, .270 BA/.357 OBP/.533 SLG, 22 2B, 7 3B, 23 HR, 75 RBI, 20 SB, 55 BB/112 SO
Derek Fisher, OF
Fisher was drafted in the 1st round of 2014. After a solid showing in his rookie season in the minors, he spent 2015 between Quad Cities and Lancaster hitting .275 with 22 HR, 87 RBI. Fisher has a great combination of speed and power while providing solid defense in the outfield. Fisher started the 2016 season with Corpus and had a very good April and May before a down June and July. He would pick it back up and got promoted to AAA where he hit .290 with 5 HR, 17 RBI in 27 games. Fisher and Martin were two of only three minor leaguers in all of baseball with 20+ HR and 20+ SB.
2016 Stats: 129 G, .255 BA/.367 OBP/.448 SLG, 21 2B, 21 HR, 76 RBI, 28 SB, 83 BB/154 SO
Drew Ferguson, OF
Ferguson was a 19th round pick by the Astros in the 2015 MLB Draft. He had a good showing last year between Tri-City and Quad Cities hitting .297 with 16 2B and 4 HR in 61 games. Ferguson dominated the California League hitting .313 with 14 HR, 69 RBI in 90 games. This included a stretch where he had 20 RBI in 10 games. He was promoted to Corpus and continued his hot hitting posting a line of .327 with 3 HR in 15 games. Ferguson had one of the better overall seasons in the Astros minor league system.
2016 Stats: 105 G, .315 BA/.408 OBP/.542 SLG, 29 2B, 17 HR, 76 RBI, 30 SB, 51 BB/95 SO
**Photo Credit: Erick Sifuentes**