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Why Astros fans should be excited about these potential breakout players?

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In Forrest Whitley, Abraham Toro, and Kyle Tucker, the Astros can have three very productive players for the long run.

MLB: Spring Training-St. Louis Cardinals at Houston Astros Jim Rassol-USA TODAY Sports

The 2020 MLB regular season will clearly be a peculiar one. Every game will count triple and everybody will have a chance to make it to the postseason. One bad week can make your chances disappear, so every team will need to get full support from all their players from Day 1.

It’s true the Astros have a great lineup and a strong rotation that should be among the best in the American League, at least. But they will surely appreciate help from their young guys, the same ones that are supposed to be the future core of the team.

Let’s take a look at the youngsters we should be excited about...

1. RHP Forrest Whitley

Minor League Baseball: Arizona Fall League-All Star Game Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

This is THE MAN. There aren’t many guys with Whitley’s stuff in the Minors. This young righty is talented and GOOD. It’s just he hasn’t been able to prove it in the upper levels. In four seasons in the Minors, Whitley has struck out 13.2 hitters per nine, but has struggled with control.

Why be excited about him? Easy! He can be the next ace. Heck, he can even be the next Gerrit Cole and he’s just 22 years old (will turn 23 on September 15). It’s true that teams can’t afford to develop or try players for long periods in the MLB this season, but this guy deserves a chance, especially after the cancellation of the MiLB campaign due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

I’m telling you... If Whitley turns things around, we could be talking about Nate Pearson’s or MacKenzie Gore’s talent. Consistency is the keyword for him.

2. IF Abraham Toro

MLB: Houston Astros at Toronto Blue Jays Kevin Sousa-USA TODAY Sports

Toro wasn’t impressive in his first taste of the Majors, last year. But he was a victim of bad luck, as I wrote days ago. The Canadian native is slated to have a huge role on the Astros team in the foreseeable future, as he can play third, second, and first base.

Even though he struggled against lefties, he put a solid slash line (.273/.349/.509) against righties in his 2019 small sample. But Abraham had a weird combination of above-average contact (83.0%), below-average BABIP (.259), and an acceptable exit velocity (86.9 MPH). Besides, 50% of the balls he put in play were hit to the ground.

That’s why you should be expecting a rebound or breakout from Toro, whatever you want to call it. When the team goes through what can be a free agent purge from 2021 on, Toro’s value should rise quickly for the Astros.

3. OF Kyle Tucker

MLB: Spring Training-New York Mets at Houston Astros Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

Before there was a Forrest Whitley, there was a Kyle Tucker. Tucker was the best prospect in Astros organization for a long time and could be on the verge of becoming a star at the game’s highest level.

Tucker already made an impression in the bigs. Both in 2018 and 2019, the 23-year-old had 72 plate appearances for Houston. Two years ago, he struggled to a .141/.236/.203 slash line (9-for-64), with no home runs, and four ribbies. Last season, things panned out for him: .269/.319/.537, with four dingers, and 11 runs batted in.

This boy has had us excited for years. His talent should earn him a place in the Astros everyday lineup anytime soon, especially because Josh Reddick, Michael Brantley, and George Springer are in their walk year. His 30-30 potential should bring joy to H-Town.

Poll

Who are you most excited about?

This poll is closed

  • 59%
    Forrest Whitley
    (429 votes)
  • 4%
    Abraham Toro
    (33 votes)
  • 36%
    Kyle Tucker
    (260 votes)
722 votes total Vote Now