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Astros Minor League Recap (6/26): Are Preston Tucker and Jon Gaston The Same Person?

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Astros fans are excited about Preston Tucker, but is he a repeat of Jon Gaston? Maybe. Maybe not.

The Curse of Jon Gaston

In light of Preston Tucker promotion, I was painfully reminded of the Jon Gaston experience. As many of you remember, Gaston blasted 35 bombs for the Lancaster Jethawks in 2009, with a slash line of .278/.367/.598.


2009 was around the time I legitimately began following the Astros farm system, as a whole. I can rattle off obscure former prospects like Keith Ginter, Todd Self and Charlton Jimerson in my sleep, but I didn't start playing close attention to the overall system until 2008 or 2009, to the point where I had dozens of post-its on my laptop. Those post-its included names, stats, ages, leagues, and "Austin Nicely Stars" for guys I really liked. Jon Gaston was one of those "star guys" for me.

Admittedly, I had no idea what I was doing, at the time. You can make the case that I still don't, but back then my "evaluation" process included RBI total, and really took nothing other than counting stats into consideration. OK HAROLD REYNOLDS!

Fast forward to 2010, when Gaston slugged .399 in Corpus Christi, and was essentially never heard from again. My newborn prospect heart was broken, so I focused my attention on the shiny new Lancaster phenom, Jay Austin, but that story is for another day. Most of you know how it ended.

This all brings us to the recently-promoted Preston Tucker. The similarities between him and 2009 Jon Gaston are eerie. They're both predominantly right fielders. They both bat left-handed. They were both 7th round picks. They have similar builds (6', 217 and 6'0, 200). And they were both 22 years old during their Lancaster out-breaks.

Here are their home/away SLG% splits for the launching pad that is Lancaster.

Gaston - Home: .692, Away: .504

Tucker - Home: .626, Away: .464

The case can be made both ways, because Tucker has a history of being a better overall hitter, but only time will tell if he will overcome the Curse of Jon Gaston. His first night in Corpus produced a 1-5 (.200 SLG%) evening.

Oklahoma City (41-37) - OFF

Corpus Christi (46-31)

  • Enrique Hernandez - 1-3, 2 BB
  • Max Stassi - 4-5, 2B, 2 HR
  • Jonathan Meyer - 2-4, HR, BB
  • Preston Tucker - 1-5
  • Zach Johnson - 2-5, K
  • Michael Burgess - 2-5, 2B, HR, K
  • Jio Mier - 2-5, 2 K
  • Drew Muren - 2-5, 2B
  • Ruben Alaniz - 6 IP, 5 H, 0 ER, 2 BB, 1 K, 7/4 GO/AO
  • Kenny Long - 2 IP, 4 H, 1 ER, 0 BB, 1 K, 3/1 GO/AO

Lancaster (45-31)

  • Delino DeSheilds Jr. - 0-4, BB, 2 K, ERROR
  • Nolan Fontana - 0-3, 2 BB, K
  • Andrew Aplin - 2-4, BB, CS
  • MP Cokinos - 0-4
  • Joe Sclafini - 1-4, 2B, BB, K
  • Telvin Nash - 2-3, 2B, HR, 0 K!!!
  • Tyler Heineman - 3-5, 2 HR
  • Chris Epps - 2-4, HR, CS
  • Tom Shirley - 4 IP, 1 H, 0 ER, 2 BB, 5 K, 2/2 GO/AO
  • Theron Geith - 1 IP, 0 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 1 K
  • Aaron West - 3 IP, 7 H, 5 ER, 0 BB, 3 K, 2/4 GO/AO

Quad Cities (43-32)

  • Teoscar Hernandez - 1-4, CS
  • Carlos Correa - 1-3, BB
  • Rio Ruiz - 1-4, 2 K, Error
  • Brett Phillips - 0-2, BB
  • Jordan Jankowski - 5 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 0 BB, 5 K, 6/1 GO/AO
  • Mike Hauschild - 2 IP, 3 H, 0 ER, 1 BB, 3 K, 3/1 GO/AO

Tri-Cities (8-2)

  • Tony Kemp - 2-5, CS
  • James Ramsay - 2-4, HR, BB
  • Conrad Gregor - 1-4, BB
  • Dan Gulbransen - 2-4, 2B, HR, K
  • Ronnie Mitchell - 2-4, 2B
  • Randall Fant - 4 IP, 5 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 3 K, 4/4 GO/AO
  • Chia-Jen Lo - 1 IP, 1 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 2 K

Greenville (2-5)

  • Tanner Mathis - 1-3, BB
  • Juan Santana - 1-4, 2B, BB
  • Bobby Borchering - 0-3, BB, K
  • Ariel Ovando - 1-4, HR, 2 K
  • Jack Mayfield - 1-3, HR
  • Christopher Lee - 4.2 IP, 5 H, 3 ER, 0 BB, 2 K, 10/1 GO/AO

GCL Astros (4-1)

  • Jason Martin - 2-5, 2 K
  • Tyler White - 2-5, 2B
  • Yonathan Mejia - 2-5
  • Jake Nottingham - 2-5, 2B, BB, SB
  • Javaris Reynolds - 1-5, K
  • Joe Bircher - 1.2 IP, 4 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, 0 K, 3/1 GO/AO
  • Ambiorix De Leon - 4.1 IP, 7 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 1 K, 4/4 GO/AO

DSL Astros (13-8)

  • Jean Luis Estrella - 3-4
  • Brauly Mejia - 2-3, 2B
  • Junior Garcia - 2.2 IP, 6 H, 5 ER, 1 BB, 2 K
  • Juan Hernandez - 5.1 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, 3 BB, 5 K

*BOLD indicates Top Prospect*