TCB Astros Podcast Mailbag: J-Sing, Trogdor and Springer Dingers

Kelvin Kuo-USA TODAY Sports

Singleton, Trogdor and Springer all discussed in this week's podcast edition.

Though I didn't participate in the podcast this week (thanks, battery in my phone), I can answer some questions the guys didn't get to. If you have questions for the podcast, feel free to drop them in our live thread, ask them on Twitter or chat along with our Mixlr live feed.

Jgardenhire says:

I see Singleton is out of the lineup tonight. When do you think he’ll be called up? Do you see him in the 6 slot?

His Twitter faux-pas notwithstanding, Singleton is nearing our arbitrary stabilization point. He's only about 80 plate appearances away from what he recorded last season in Triple-A, and his walk rate has stabilized while his strikeout rate has dropped quite a bit.

The only problem? If we look at what he's done in the last month (.247/.384/.432), he doesn't look like the masher you probably expect him to be. Singleton hit nine home runs in April, but managed just four in May. Power is always the last thing to come with prospects as young as Singleton, so any uptick looks good.

But, he's not exactly at the same place he was in April, performance-wise. If Houston called him up now, they could maybe expect Dexter Fowler-like production out of him. He'd get on base at a good clip while showing little power and decent defense (at an unimportant position).

Singleton will be up soon. I'm just not sure it's going to be as soon as fans want.

Colin George McGonagle says:

What do the Astros do with Carter? How much time does he get to turn things around? The season is getting old and things aren’t changing enough.

Do you know the weird thing? Carter is on pace for about five less home runs than last season (according to the projection systems), yet he's going to be about as valuable to Houston.

How can that be, you ask?

It's all in his defense. Carter played too much left field last season and took a hit defensively because of it. This year, he's stuck mainly to first base and designated hitter. He still gets penalized for this in calculating his defensive value, but he's not been as bad there as he was when he patrolled the outfield.

Also, it's worth pointing out that Carter's strikeout rate is six percent less than he posted last season. It's right in line with his previous seasons in Oakland, in fact. Oh, and he's been extremely unlucky with his batting average on balls in play. In the past, Carter has not hit for much average, but he maintained that thanks to a lofty BABiP right around .300. This year? His BABiP is down to .247 while his walk rate has also dipped.

Both of those last two numbers figure to come up. If his on-base percentage peeks back up to 2013 levels, he'd have the fifth-highest on the team. Add in that he's one of four players on pace for 20+ home runs and its safe to say Carter won't be going anywhere soon.

He's still near replacement level, but he does provide value.

BDeRo says:

When will George Springer reveal the red and yellow ‘S’?

Just before he's tossed through the wall of an IHOP and then violates every character convention built for 60 or more years by using lethal force.

Hey, but at least that dude is still in control of Batman vs. Superman and any possible Justice League movies.

Thanks, BDeRo. Yours is the first Springer question that's ever depressed me.

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