Houston Astros’ Prospect Ramon Laureano Turning Heads in AFL
The Houston Astros’ 29th Top Prospect Laureano is Off to a Hot Start in the Arizona Fall League.
When the 2016 season started, not too many Houston Astros fans knew too much about Ramon Laureano. The organization drafts so many players each year that it’s hard to remember each one until they make themselves known. This year, Laureano put himself on the map. Midseason, Jim Callis came on Talking Stros and admitted that he didn’t know that much about Laureano.
That was then. This is now. Laureano was drafted in the 16th round of the 2014 MLB draft out of Northeastern Oklahoma A&M. Two years after he was drafted, Laureano has risen through the ranks finishing in Double-A. Earlier in the year, Laureano joined us on Talking Stros. He gave us a little background on his time before the Stros drafted him.
Laureano also made the MLB Pipeline Astros top 30 for the first time as the 2016 season came to a conclusion. The 29th Astros prospect batted .319 between Single-A and Double-A, hitting 15 homers and driving in 73 runs. More impressively, he stole 43 bases and scored 89 runs. This could be the making of a leadoff type hitter with some power.
While his body is built to get on-base more often than not, he is not projected to hit many homers in the big leagues. Something that he has shown thus far is gap power versus home run power. Like Tyler White before him, Laureano could be using offseason baseball to catapult him to the big leagues.
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This offseason, Laureano has joined prospects Francis Martes, Garrett Stubbs, Jason Martin, and David Paulino on the Glendale Desert Dogs in the AFL. While Martes had a week to forget about, Laureano had a great start to the season. He was awarded the player of the first week of AFL play. While people around baseball are asking who Laureano is, Astros fans are not that surprised.
In his first week of play in the AFL, Laureano has eight hits in 18 at-bats, which is an impressive .444. He hasn’t homered yet, but Laureano has two doubles and triples each. He has scored eight runs while collecting 14 total bases. Laureano also won the California League player of the week back in July and was named to the postseason California League All-Star team.
After being drafted in the 16th round of the 2014 draft, Laureano has played great baseball. Like White did, he could ride his success in offseason baseball to accelerate his rise to the big leagues. The Astros might want to give him more time in Triple-A, so don’t look for him to debut in early 2017. However, late 2017 could be possible depending on what the Astros do in free agency.
Keep getting better Ramon. The Astros could need you before you know it. There are a few outfielders ahead of him on the depth chart, but his speed and on-base percentage should play in the big leagues. Imagine being able to put his speed in the front of the HoustonAstros lineup so George Springer can bat further down in the lineup. That would be winning!
***Stats from MLB.com***