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.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Former G-Stros Fighting for Roster Spots

Let's take a look outside the Astros system at players who have been in big league camp and what their chances are of making a major league roster on opening day.

Troy Patton - Orioles (G-Stros 2004)
Patton has been solid this spring.  In five games, he has not allowed an earned run in 6 1/3 IP.  He has picked up one save as well.  This combined with his solid finish to the 2011 season in the Orioles bullpen make him the former G-Stro with the best chance of making the big league team.

Patton's chances of making the Orioles out of spring training: Very Likely  

Felipe Paulino - Royals (G-Stros 2004)
Paulino is locked in a battle for the back end of the rotation in Kansas City.  Yesterday, Paulino pitched four innings against the Angles.  He allowed one run on four hits and now walks.  He fanned four batters, including Albert Pujols twice. Here is what his manager said after the game:

"He threw really well, commanded the ball, had good stuff, kept the ball down and got through four innings pretty efficiently," manager Ned Yost said. "I thought he threw the ball extremely well."
He will likely have one more start this spring.  The Royals rotation is taking shape with Jonathan Sanchez, Luke Hochevar, and Bruce Chen locking down the first three spots.  After that Paulino, Danny Duffy and Luis Mendoza are battling for the last two spots.  Paulino and Mendoza are out of options so sending them down, would expose them to the waiver wire.

Paulino's chances at making the Royals out of spring training: Likely

Jordan Parraz - Braves (G-Stros 2004)
Parraz has toured the minor leagues in his career.  He started with the Astros' organization and was traded to the Royals.  He was claimed off waivers by the Red Sox and the Yankee's before signing with the Braves this year as a minor league free agent.  He has played three seasons in AAA and has hit a respectable but not spectacular .279 with an OBP of .356 and slugging .425.

This spring, he has been on fire on a Braves team who has struggled offensively.  Through 17 games (24 AB), he is hitting .417 with a triple and a home run.  He has walked once and struck out three times.

Parraz is fighting for the 25th spot on the roster. The last spot on the roster is currently occupied by Jose Costanza, who became a fan favorite filling in for Jason Heyward last year. Constanza is hitting .174 in 13 games this spring (23 AB). The other candidate for the spot is Luis Durango, who had a cup of coffee with Houston last year. Durango is hitting an impressive .526 in 19 at bats. All 10 of his hits have been singles and he has walked five times as well. So his OBP is .625. I think this battle will come down to what the Braves want on the bench. If they want flexibility in OF position, Parraz has the edge. If they want power, Parraz has the edge. If they want speed, Durango has the edge.

Parraz's chance of making the Braves roster out of spring training: Possible 

J R Towles - Twins (G-Stros 2004) 
Towles signed a minor league deal with the Twins and is battling for the third catcher spot behind Joe Mauer, and Ryan Doumit.  He has had a mixed spring batting .200 with one home run.  His competition for the spot Rene Rivera and Drew Butera.  Rivera played in 45 games for the Twins last year and hit just .144.  Butera played in 93 games for the Twins last seaon and hit .167.  So all three of these guys have major league time with very poor hitting track records.  They are all 28 years old.

Towles chances of making the Twins' roster out of spring training: Unlikely

Victor Garate - Brewers (G-Stros 2005)

Garate has only appeared in one game for the Brewers this spring.  Expect him to be in AAA when camp breaks.

Garate's chances of making the Brewers' roster out of spring training: No chance

Ralph Henriquez - Mariners (G-Stros 2005, 2006)
Henriquez has appeared in two games early in camp and has not appeared in one since.  He has one hit in three at bats.

Henriquez's chances of making the Mariners' roster out of spring training: No chance

Best of luck to these guys.  We will continue to keep you updated on where former Greeneville Astros wind up when big league and minor league camps break.

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