Astros busy in the Dominican
The Astros have signed a pair of teenagers out of the Dominican Republic, pitcher Carlos Vasquez and outfielder Edward Santana, and have reached an agreement with pitcher Tomas Lopez, whose signing isn’t yet official.
Vasquez, 16, is a 6-2, 180-pound right-hander with an extra large frame and someone who Astros director of Latin American scouting Felix Francisco believes will be a power pitcher. He throws between 88 and 90 mph now, but Francisco said the ball jumps out of his hands and he has a good breaking ball.
“We feel this guy is going to be really strong in the future,” Francisco said.
Santana, 17, was the best position player left on the market, Francisco said. He can play center field, but the Astros like more in right field. There are many things Francisco likes about Santana, whose older brother used to play in the Rangers system.
“He runs 60 yards in 6.75 seconds and has a good arm,” Francisco said. “He can hit and has a real nice balance. He stays inside the baseball and uses the whole field. He’s not a big power guy right now and more of a guy you can project will hit 15-20 home runs. His power will come with time, but he does have good bat speed and good extension.”
Francisco likes that Santana hits the ball to the opposite field, which you don’t usually see in young players in the Dominican.
Lopez, 17, is a right-handed pitcher with nice arm action. He recently established himself in the Dominican Prospect League and began to draw interest from several teams, including the Astros.
All three players will report to the Astros academy in the Dominican Republic and will play there this summer.