Astros MOD #1

Hello, everyone. I read on the volunteer thread post that Toonces the Driving Cat had chosen to be the Astros DoS, but it seems like everyone else's MOD is up and Toonces hasn't been on in quite some time. If it's okay with John, I'd like to take over as DoS. This may appear to be a dick move but most MODs were started a week or so ago and time is slowly running out to discuss the Astros picks. Let me know when you can, John. I'd be happy to volunteer as an assistant DoS to Toonces if he is indeed active (i.e. reading content, just not posting).

To save some time, I'll just do a big synopsis of the Astros, even though I'm not sure this is cool with John.

Alright, to start, here are the pick numbers and their values:

#1 - $7,790,400

#40 - $1,397,200

#74 - $747,700

#107 - $481,900

Our overall depth in the system is quite strong, though there are some holes here & there. The most notable one is the lack of a true ace. Jarred Cosart has the stuff of one but his lack of command & inability to mix his pitches well has held him back, unfortunately. Lance McCullers, Jr. has impressive stuff as well but there are questions about his size and also about his command.

In other words, we have a bunch of potential #3s in our system, with the occasional #2 like a Cosart or a McCullers (perhaps even Mike Foltynewicz). Bottom line: We need an ace. Mark Appel & Jonathan Gray are arguably the two top talents in the draft and though each of them have struggled at times this year, they're still projected #1s.

I prefer Appel at this point, due to having three projected plus pitches. Gray does possess the better fastball, but his third pitch is not nearly as strong as Appel's is. That's just my opinion, though, and I could definitely be swayed to take Gray (or any of the other top prospects, for that matter).

Last year GM Jeff Luhnow got cute and cut a deal with Carlos Correa in order to save money for McCullers & Rio Ruiz. That was a bold move, but it paid off greatly, and though it was the right thing to do last year I'm not so sure that it's the right strategy this year, as this year's draft class doesn't quite have as much talent as last year's did (if that's even possible), and it makes sense that we take either Mark Appel or Jonathan Gray or perhaps Kris Bryant instead of trying to save money for high ceiling HS kids dropping due to sign-ability.

Aside from all of that, our future infield is in good tact, as Jonathan Singleton is the top 1B prospect in the minors, Delino DeShields, Jr. is one of the top 2B ones, and Correa is one of the best SS ones. Rio Ruiz has yet to join those other three in terms of value but he has the talent to become one of the top 3B prospects in the minors.

In the outfield, we have the swing happy yet extremely toolsy pair of George Springer & Domingo Santana. Both are in AA, and should be ready to contribute as early as next year.

So overall, we're pretty set in the field. Our bats are the strength of the system.

Hopefully that was a good, general summary of the system for those of you who lacked knowledge of it.

Please comment and share your thoughts. I know I didn't mention Austin Meadows, Clint Frazier or Kohl Stewart (I attended the HS that he's at) but any of them could be the pick if a convincing case is made. I'm usually a BPA guy and the fact that Mark Appel is the consensus BPA is very convenient, as again our biggest hole in the system is the lack of a true ace. As for the rest of the draft, I'm going to do research on players who could fall in rounds 2-4, but I'd very much appreciate it if y'all suggest a favorite prospect or two that could slide to those three rounds.

This last bit is just to speculate how each prospect could fit into the system.

Mark Appel - Is essentially MLB-ready. Could be a true rotation anchor going forward. He and Jarred Cosart would look very good at 1 & 2 at the top of the rotation next season.

Jonathan Gray - May not be able to contribute until sometime next season, but if he can develop a third pitch he may be worth taking at 1.1. Having a couple of fireballers like him and Cosart & eventually McCullers would be an exciting rotation.

Kris Bryant - Imagine having a middle of the order consisting of George Springer, Jonathan Singleton, Chris Carter & Bryant... That's just an absurd amount of power. Could be an enticing choice, especially since he wouldn't need a lot of time in the minors.

Austin Meadows - The Astros could use another top notch outfielder in their system outside of Springer & Santana and Meadows' overall talent is arguably worthy of being the top pick in the draft. Will take some time to develop, but his ceiling is waaay up there.

Kohl Stewart - Extremely impressive fastball that consistently sits in the 95-97 range. Very athletic, fairly projectable. Breaking ball looks promising but he's pretty raw overall. Like Meadows, he'd take time to develop, but his ceiling is huge.

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