Five Astros Make MLB Pipeline’s Top 100 Prospects
As the 2017 season inches closer, the major prospect rankings are starting to come out. MLB Pipeline (MLB.com) released their list last night. Here are the Astros on that list.
#20 Francis Martes
Martes continues his climb. MLB Pipeline had him ranked #41 going into 2016 and with a great year, he moves up to #20. Martes pitched the entire season with Corpus Christi and went 9-6 with a 3.30 ERA and 131 K in 125.1 innings at just 20 years old. He should make his MLB debut at some point this season.
#35 Kyle Tucker
Just like Martes, Tucker is on the rise. After a solid showing in rookie ball in 2015, MLB Pipeline ranked him as the #74 prospect going into 2016. In 2016 Tucker hit .285/.360/.438 with 25 2B, 9 HR, 69 RBI, 32 SB in 117 games. Scouts believe he should add more power and if he does, he may jump from #35 up to one of the top outfield prospects in baseball.
#54 David Paulino
Another guy on the rise. Paulino has had a long journey to this point recovering from TJS but pitched well in 2015 posting a 2.81 ERA. MLB Pipeline didn’t rank him in the top 100 heading into 2016. That has obviously changed as Paulino went 5-4 with a 2.00 ERA and 19 BB/106 K in 90 IP in 2016.
#83 Derek Fisher
This is Fisher first appearance on MLB Pipeline’s list. After being drafted in the first round in 2014, he has had back to back season with 20+ HR/20+ SB (22 HR, 31 SB in 2015; 21 HR, 28 SB in 2016). Fisher split time between AA and AAA in 2016 showing off his power and speed combination as well as his patience at the plate with 83 BB in 129 games.
#84 Forrest Whitley
Whitley was drafted #16 overall by the Astros just this past summer. After signing he tossed 18.2 IP striking out 26 in two levels of rookie ball. Whitley is a big kid at 6’7″ and 240 lbs. His fastball sits 92-97 MPH. He has good body control and an easy delivery. He should make his full season debut in 2017.
There are other prospects who might have got some top 100 consideration like Garrett Stubbs, Franklin Perez, and Ramon Laureano. More lists will come out in the following months and our top 30 Astros prospect list will be out sometime in March.
**Photo Credit: Tammy Tucker**