Who’s the DH of the future?

With the Astros headed to the American League West beginning in 2013, there’s going to be a different brand of baseball played at Minute Maid Park. There will be less bunts, fewer pitching changes and almost no double-switches. All of which is thanks to the presence of the designated hitter.

If you grew up a baseball fan in Houston, seeing the designated hitter at Minute Maid Park will take some time to embrace. Beginning in 2013, there will be no more watching pitchers trying to bunt and swing away aimlessly. No more acting shocked when the Gustavo Chacins of the world hit home runs (unless the Astros are playing Interleague Play in a National League park).

OK, now I’m confused.

The bottom line is the Astros are going to have to find a designated hitter. They have a pretty good candidate to be DH in Carlos Lee, but as luck would have it, his contract expires at the end of the 2012 season. The Astros aren’t likely to bring him back after paying him $100 million over six years.

The DH is usually associated with a guy like Frank Thomas or David Ortiz, burly sluggers who have the ability to hit the ball out of the ballpark and who aren’t the greatest defenders. But some of the best DH’s have been guys who can flat out hit, but not necessarily hit the long ball as proficiently as the Big Hurt. Edgar Martinez and Harold Baines, two of the best DH’s ever, never hit more than 40 homers in a season, and Baines never hit more than 30.

Could the future DH be Brett Wallace, who has yet to establish himself in the Majors? Wallace will need to find his power stroke first, but if he’s still in the organization in two years he’ll be in the mix.

The two players in the system who appear to have the most potential to be DH’s down the road are Jonathan Singleton and Telvin Nash, who is build like Ryan Howard.

Singleton, acquired from the Phillies in the Hunter Pence deal, is one of the club’s top prospects and has emerging power. A left-handed hitter who plays first base, he hit a combined 13 homers last season between high Class A Clearwater and Lancaster. The kid is bursting with potential.

Nash, a 6-foot-1, 230-pound right-hander, looks more like your prototypical DH. He bashed 14 homers in only 268 at-bats last year at low Class A Lexington, missing two months after breaking a bone in his hand.

If Singleton is indeed the team’s first baseman of the future, Nash is destined for a DH role. Another slugger who push for DH time is Kody Hinze. He’s not a top prospect, but he’s shown some pretty good power and has been playing first base as well.

7 Comments

The only comments I have on this p$ss poor situation, are not the kind that can be printed on paper. NOT *ONE* penny of my money will go into Jim Crane’s pocket.
I vow to do EVERYTHING I can to cause this owner to fail. Extortion is ILLEGAL.

Take time to get used to the DH?! Are you serious you moron? The fans in Houston and the state of Texas dont forget a darn thing hence the battle cries of Remember the Alamo , Goliad, and to hang Bud Adams.

Good bye Astros. Not going to a live Astros game until Crane and Selig are gone and the Astros return to the National League.

What about Chase Davidson .335/.426/ .646

http://www.houstonsports.org/getting_involved/contact_us/

Send an email to the Houston Sports Authority and tell them to do everything they can to block the Astros move to the AL! Let Selig put his beloved Brewers back in the AL where they belong. Click this link and go to CONTACT US.

It really doesn’t matter to me, because after being a fan of Astros baseball for 50yrs, I will never bother to watch them again now that they have defected to the junior league. No more tickets, no more souvenirs, no more anything to do with them. It will a AAAA team with no prospects of anything but regular drubbings by the likes of the Rangers, Athletics, Angels, et.al. The new owner will collect his $50million every year from revenue sharing and he just got a few mill. from Selig to make the move. Face it he succumbed to extortion from Herr Selig (der Fuhrer of der MLB). He won’t be able to buy any players worth a damn. It will be years of disappointment for the few fans left. Thank God for MLB package online and satellite. I will not have to watch Designated Hitter Ball which is all that will be available in the second largest state in the country. I will go back to the team of my youth, the St. Louis Cardinals. Not likely der Fuhrer will try to make them move and if the Lastros come to play them in interleague play, I will get the satisfaction of watching them struggle with trying to play REAL BASEBALL. Of course they have been doing that since 2006 anyways.

Try to get Daniel Murphy from the Mets. He can play utility this coming year, and DH in 2013.

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