The Arizona Fall League is considered to be the premier league of winter ball. Teams send some of their top prospects there to get extra work in after the MiLB season is over. Over the past decade the Astros have sent top prospects such as George Springer, Francis Martes, Yordan Alvarez, Kyle Tucker, Framber Valdez, Abraham Toro, and Forrest Whitley.
This season the Astros sent seven prospects to play in the Arizona Fall League. Here is an update on how they are performing:
J.J. Matijevic, OF - .294 BA/.314 OBP/.500 SLG (10-for-34), 2 2B, 1 3B, 1 HR, 7 RBI
Jeremy Pena, SS - .172 BA/.273 OBP/.241 SLG (5-for-29), 2 2B, 2 RBI
Colton Shaver, 3B/C - .214 BA/.267 OBP/.214 SLG (3-for-14)
Forrest Whitley, RHP - 2 G, 0.96 ERA, 9.1 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 14 K
Cody Deason, RHP - 2 G, 7.71 ERA, 2.1 IP, 4 H, 2 ER, 3 BB, 4 K
Jojanse Torres, RHP - 2 G, 0.00 ERA, 2.0 IP, 2 H, 0 ER, 2 BB, 5 K
Carlos Sanabria, RHP - 3 G, 2.25 ERA, 4.0 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 5 K
Matijevic struggled a bit to start the season and then ended up getting suspended for 50 games under the MiLB drug program. Post suspension, he had a .788 OPS with 17 2B, 9 HR in 59 games. So far he is off to a nice start in the AFL showing off some of his power. Good sign for him.
Pena put together a great season in 2019 hitting .303 with .825 OPS in 109 games. He is a great defender at SS so the bat coming around is huge. He has struggled a bit in the AFL, striking out 15 times in just 7 games. But this is easily the most baseball he has played in one season as a professional, so there could be some wear on him this year.
Whitley had a rough 2019 season but is off to a great start in the AFL. He has started two games and went 4.2 innings in both. In the 2nd he had 0 BB/8 K. Really nice sign to see Whitley showing dominant stuff, but also dominating on the field. He needs a big fall before heading to Spring Training in 2020.