We continue our look at the top three prospects at each position moving to the shortstop position this week.
Top Three Prospects By Position:
1. Freudis Nova (Rookie)
Nova was a big signing by the Astros in 2016 when he signed for $1.2 million. Nova was seen as one of the best prospects of the 2016 international group. Nova played in 47 games in the DSL in 2017 slashing .247/.342/.355 at 17 years old good for a 110 wRC+. Nova is very gifted defensively and has a ton of upside with the bat. Scouts have noted his exceptional bat speed and consistent hard contact. He should start this year in GCL which puts him on track with the typical high school draftee as he will be just 18 years old this season.
2017 Stats: 44 G, .247 BA/.343 OBP/.355 SLG, 6 2B, 4 HR, 16 RBI, 8 SB, 15 BB/33 SO (minors)
2. Jonathan Arauz (A)
Astros acquired Arauz from the Phillies as a add on piece in the Ken Giles trade. While Arauz doesn’t have one stand out tool, he is solid across the board. Arauz split time between Tri-City and Quad Cities at 18 years old this season. He hit .264 with .704 OPS in 33 games with Tri-City (115 wRC+). He only hit .220 with Quad Cities but did have 20 BB/18 SO in 36 games. He is a switch hitter who still has a lot of projection left.
2017 Stats: 69 G, .242 BA/.336 OBP/.319 SLG, 10 2B, 3 3B, 1 HR, 15 RBI, 32 BB/47 SO
3. Miguelangel Sierra (A-)
Sierra gained some notoriety early with his appearance in the Altuve mini-movie after he signed for $1 million. In 2016 he showed some power in Greeneville slugging 11 HR in just 31 games leading people to have high expectations for 2017. Unfortunately he only hit .178 with 4 HR in 57 games for Tri-City (71 wRC+). He just turned 20 years old so still has time but at this point he is pretty much projection only.
2017 Stats: 57 G, .178 BA/.260 OBP/.297 SLG, 8 2B, 4 HR, 13 RBI, 6 SB, 17 BB/62 SO
Deury Carrasco (DSL): The Astros signed Carrasco for $480,000 in the summer of 2016. Carrasco played this season with the DSL Astros and had a solid professional debut. In 64 games he had a 125 wRC+ with more walks than strikeouts. While he doesn’t have a lot of power, he makes up for it with his plate discipline and speed, evident by the 32 stolen bases.