Baseball Prospectus always does a good job of having tentpole articles throughout the year, prospect rankings, season preview, and scouting reports etc. The midseason Top 50 Prospects falls into the category. In seasons past, the Astros have had a handful of prospects make the list. This year, they have just one -- Mark Appel at 35. Outfielder Brett Phillips made the "Just Missed the Top 50 List."
Appel was ranked 35 in BP Pre-Season Top 101 Prospect, thus he hasn't moved up or down even with numerous prospects graduating to the major leagues. BP said of Appel:
A season marked with uneven results further amplifies the questions surrounding this former no. 1 overall pick, while casting additional haze on what exactly he's going to be. The stuff is there to be a front-line type, though some wonder if the intestinal fortitude and consistent execution will allow him to produce at that level. Now that he's sitting in Triple-A, we're likely to get a definitive picture soon. -Chris Mellen
Appel moved up to Triple A Fresno recently. He has posted 5-2 record with 5.00 ERA in 15 starts this season.
With a little more time between his promotion to Double-A and the release date of our list, Phillips might have been able to prove that he belonged on the back end given that he's had as much helium this year as any prospect we discussed. Even with his continuing track record of success, however, his ceiling just wasn't quite as high as some of the others on the back end of the list.
Phillips moved up from Single A Lancaster to Double A Corpus Christi, he is currently batting .322 (103x320) with 15 home runs, 55 RBIs, 24 walks, 12 stolen bases, and a .962 OPS.