Welcome to another Tuesday in between Houston’s World Championships.
I saw in yesterday’s thread where someone cited that we’re being “sore winners.” I mean, every team that wins a title has fans who are happy to celebrate well into the next season. Also, think about which fanbase is the likeliest to call Astros fans “sore winners...” Nothing obnoxious about Yankees fans, right? Once again, glass houses.
In addition to the normal links and one offseason profile, I’m including a bonus profile because I fell behind by a day. A day doesn’t seem like much in the grand scheme of TCB, but fitting all 316 players required a lot of math, and a little cheating (remember I started with the lower-level minor league guys way back on September 12). As it stands, the boys will have one spring training game under their belt when I finally put a fork in this project.
Astros News: Yainer Diaz Could Play First Base in 2023 (climbingtalshill.com)
Footage of Dusty Baker getting heated with Tony LaRussa and the St. Louis Cardinals resurfaces on Twitter: “Bunch of baby motherf****** punks” (sportskeeda.com)
This is hilarious.
Baseball world rallies around Hendriks (mlb.com)
Oops! All Astros
Chad Stevens is a six-foot-four, 215 lb. right-handed infielder from Walnut Creek, CA. Born on February 3, 1999, he was initially taken in the 40th round by the San Diego Padres in 2017. After instead matriculating to Portland University and hitting .291 over 170 collegiate games, the Astros spent their 2021 11th round choice on him. Chosen 328th overall, Stevens agreed to a deal that included a $125,000 signing bonus.
Only five players taken 328th off the board have made it to the major league level, and to date, none of them have broken the 1.0 WAR mark. Portland alum, meanwhile, have produced 61 draft picks and seven major leaguers, chief amongst them Tom Lampkin (6.2 WAR).
Post-draft, Stevens accrued a .147/.239/.224 slashline in 34 games with the Low-A Fayetteville Woodpeckers. Hardly something to write home about, but the Astros braintrust pushed him up a level anyway.
Stevens responded with solid numbers in 2022 for the High-A Asheville Tourists, raising his OPS nearly 300 points in 85 games. He had multiple hits 20 times, including seven times where he notched three or more. On May 12, he was a highlight reel unto himself, with two homers, two doubles and four RBI in a 12-5 win over the Greenville Drive. On July 29, in a 17-3 win against the Aberdeen Ironbirds, he collected four RBI and fell a triple short of the cycle.
Overall, Stevens hit .248/.318/.416 with a dozen home runs and 60 RBI. He also stole 12 bases in 17 attempts. Defensively, he played 284 1⁄3 innings at shortstop (.961 fielding percentage), 234 frames at third base (.827), and 135 1⁄3 at second base (.968).
Based on what I can tell from here, Stevens is likely to start the 2023 season with the Double-A Corpus Christi Hooks. He seems to have longer-term utility at the utility infielder position, if he can get a better handle on the hot corner.
Dauri Lorenzo is a five-foot-nine, 186 lb. utility infielder from Hato Mayor, DR. Born on October 29, 2002, he signed his first professional deal with Houston on July 2, 2019. He would make his first appearances with the rookie-level FCL Astros in 2021, hitting .248/.316/.312 in 41 games.
In 2022, the FCL Astros split into two squads, and Lorenzo joined the Blue initially, although he did go back and forth between the two, racking up five games for the Orange as well. On June 6, FCL’s Opening Day, he started the season with a three-hit game, his only one of the season. He hit a single and two doubles with a run and an RBI in a 4-3 win over the FCL Cardinals.
On July 14, he hit a single and a triple, knocking one in and scoring two others in a 9-0 win against the FCL Marlins. Through the campaign, Lorenzo hit .272/.377/.360 between the two affiliates, with 15 RBI. Defensively, he played 130 2⁄3 innings at shortstop (.845 fielding percentage), 124 2⁄3 frames at second (.954), and seven innings at third base (.667).
Despite Lorenzo’s current defensive shortcomings, he did show patience beyond his age at the plate, with 17 walks and only 21 whiffs in 120 plate appearances. That patience could well see him ascend to the Low-A Fayetteville Woodpeckers in 2023, where he could continue to work on his fielding acumen. Thanks for reading.