Astros MiLB Position Review: Center Field
Now that the season is over we will review each position in the minor league system. This week we move on to the center field position. For this list, I am using the position the player played most in 2018.
Here are the previous position reviews:
Straw has steadily made his way through the system and has shown what he is capable of doing. He hits for average, draws walks, and steals bases. He started the year in AA and hit .327 with a .414 OBP in 65 games. He was also 35-41 in stolen bases. He was promoted to AAA and played in 66 games hitting .257 with .349 OBP while stealing another 35 bags. Overall he hit .291 with 70 SB in 131 games. He saw some time in Houston too and was 3-for-9 with a homer.
2018 Stats: 131 G, .291 BA/.381 OBP/.353 SLG, 17 2B, 6 3B, 1 HR, 31 RBI, 70 SB, 73 BB/102 SO
Meyers was the Astros 13th round pick in 2017 but he didn’t do much following the draft. That changed in 2018. He started the year with Quad Cities and dominated the Midwest League hitting .302 with .858 OPS and 146 wRC+ in 61 games. He was promoted to Buies Creek where he played in 60 games posting a .703 OPS. Overall he finished with a 124 wRC+, 10.2 BB% and 16.9 K%.
2018 Stats: 121 G, .278 BA/.363 OBP/.423 SLG, 31 2B, 3 3B, 8 HR, 46 RBI, 16 SB, 51 BB/83 SO
Dawson was drafted by the Astros in the 2nd round of the 2016 draft. He had a solid 2017 season and followed that up with a solid year in 2018 as well. He started the year in High-A and had a .728 OPS with 18 2B, 10 HR, 29 SB in 90 games. He was promoted to Corpus Christi where he played in 29 games and had a .859 OPS and 6 HR. He finished the year with a .762 OPS and a 114 wRC+. Dawson is one of the more intriguing prospects with his power and speed combo.
2018 Stats: 119 G, .258 BA/.333 OBP/.428 SLG, 24 2B, 2 3B, 16 HR, 63 RBI, 35 SB, 45 BB/130 SO
McKenna was drafted by the Astros in the 4th round of the this year’s draft. He put together a solid showing in his Astros’ debut. Following the draft he played for Tri-City and had a .958 OPS with 7 2B and 5 HR in 32 games. The Astros then moved him up to Quad Cities where he had a .772 OPS in 12 games. Overall he had a 164 wRC+. He will be a fun prospect to watch next year as he plays a full season in the system.
2018 Stats: 44 G, .311 BA/.394 OBP/.512 SLG, 8 2B, 2 3B, 7 HR, 28 RBI, 6 SB, 14 BB/40 SO
Ferguson was a late round find by the Astros in 2015 (19th round) but he has made his name known. Ferguson had a very nice 2018 season but only played in 71 games due to an injury. In the 65 games he played for Fresno, he had a .866 OPS and a 138 wRC+. He also had a 15.8 BB% and 20.9 K%. Overall he finished the year with a .432 OBP. He might be a guy who gets a chance next season.
2018 Stats: 71 G, .304 BA/.432 OBP/.443 SLG, 14 2B, 3 3B, 5 HR, 33 RBI, 6 SB, 49 BB/68 SO
Just like left field, the Astros have a lot of talent at CF too. Straw showed his worth late and was even added to the post season roster. He should see significant time in Houston. Dawson and McKenna will be a couple exciting guys to watch next season as they rise through the system. Ferguson adds solid outfield depth in case of injury.
**Photo Credit: Tammy Tucker**