Welcome to Appy Astros, a blog dedicated to following current & former Greeneville Astros, the Appalachian League affiliate of the Houston Astros. Here you will find reports on current G-Stros, updates on the development of former G-Stros and occasionally an update on what has happened to the guys who have hung up their spikes.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Altuve Gets A World Of Attention

Last night, Jose Altuve made a big impact on the futures game. He batted 2nd and started at 2nd. He only saw five pitches in his three at bats which didn't give the commentators much time to talk about his stature; although Aaron Boone did get in a few "his nickname is Tiny" comments. He doubled in his first at bat on a hard hit ball that went off the third baseman's glove. Some felt that it should have been called an error but it was a tough play. Second time up, he drove the ball back up the middle on a well struck single. His last at bat, he flied out to left. (I personally didn't see the trajectory on the ball but it got their awful quick to be called a fly. I thought it was a line drive.)

In the field, I thought he was going to be able to show off his over the shoulder catch ability but he was called off by the right fielder. He did turn two double plays during his five innings of playing time. And he did all this while wearing a microphone (video link)

Here is a sample of the buzz about Altuve following the game:

Keith Law from ESPN.com (insiders only) -
Jose Altuve (Houston) is tiny -- apparently only about 5-foot-5½ if you ask him -- and recent history is very much against him on that count. It does look like these insanely high batting averages he's posting aren't a fluke, though. ... looks like he'll have only doubles power, but if you hit in the low-.300s with a handful of walks and solid defense at second base, you're at least an everyday player -- and probably a fan favorite.
Ben Badler of Baseball America -
one position player who got plenty of attention was Astros second baseman Jose Altuve. At 5-foot-7, Altuve looks more like a trophy model than a top prospect, but he went 2-for-3 with a double and played solid defense at second base. Watch him in batting practice and he won't blow anyone away. Watch him over time in games, and Altuve is the type of player who grows on scouts, while his .381/.420/.576 combined line through 85 games at high Class A Lancaster and Double-A Corpus Christi speaks for itself. He had plenty of attention after the game as well, with more media members surrounding him than any other player in the World clubhouse.

"I love Altuve," said one pro scout. "I think his swing is good and he plays above his tools. He does the small things. He has a baseball sense, he makes contact and he's always in the right place at the right time. For me, his size doesn't matter because I think he's going to hit."
Alden Gonzales of MLB.com got a quote from a fellow prospect:
"What he does on the field, it's just incredible," Tigers third-base prospect Francisco Martinez, who played against Altuve when the two were teenagers in Venezuela, said. "The guy's hitting .350, .390, .400 -- I don't know what he's hitting, but he's hitting a ton. The little man can hit. It's that simple. That little man can hit."
Even Twitter was abuzz with Altuve tweets:

@WorldDugout (put out by MLB) had the following tweets during the game:
1. Definitely, Rosario and Altuve lead this dugout among players
2. Silverio yells to Altuve: "abusive prowess"
3. Rosario: "he (Altuve) is going to be our MVP"
4. Altuve says when he was on 2B, he caught himself looking around such a big stadium
5. Of course, a lot of guys teasing 5-7 Astros prospect Jose Altuve

@JimCallisBA (Baseball America) tweeted: There's just no stopping Altuve. Hard liner up the middle, has both of the World's hits so far. #Astros #FuturesGame

@JeffPassan tweeted: Astros prospect Jose Altuve, all 5-foot-6 of him, is 2 for 2 in the Futures Game. He is the Venezuelan Dustin Pedroia.

@BenBadler tweeted: If Jose Altuve keeps this up, this will be the first Futures Game where the MVP trophy is bigger than the MVP

He even gets some props from current CC Hook J. D. Martinez (@jdmartinez20): Congrats to my lil Man Jose Altuve for doing Big Things at the Futures game!!

Jose has worked hard to get this attention. I look forward to seeing him continue to improve. This performance continues to build his case for a September call up to Houston.

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