Sunday, April 24, 2011

Astros Future Wallace Bros.

The Lexington Legends of the South Atlantic League are one of the more exciting teams in all of minor league baseball and probably the most prospect rich club in the Houston Astros' organization. Notable prospects on the Lexington Legends include Delino DeShields Jr., Mike Foltynewicz, Jiovanni Mier, Tanner Bushue, Michael Kvasnicka, Telvin Nash, and Chris Wallace.

We blame Barret Loux for the facemask
Granted, it's just A ball so, it's not like these guys are on the doorstep of the Major Leagues. The Astros look like they'll have a bright future coming in just a few years.

There has been a lot of excitement lately over the hot start of Chris Wallace, and we would like to extend some of our humble spotlight his way.

In the past week, Wallace had a game where he went 5 for 6, with 3 Homeruns and 9 RBI, and another game where he went 4 for 5 and missed the cycle because he hit 2 triples instead of a double.

After 16 games, Wallace leads the South Atlantic League in Total Bases and Slugging, with 26 hits, 7 HR's, 22 RBI, a 1.389 OPS.

While this is simply a good start (and far too small a sample size to go overboard), Wallace's 2010 performance was also promising, especially for a first-year pro. Last season, Chris Wallace had 195 plate appearances in Rookie ball, triple-slashing .310/.390/.515 before a .250/.321/.368 line in 78 PA's for the low A team. His performance at the higher level left much to be desired, but some peripheral stats indicated progress. For example, according to, his strikeout percentage from Rookie ball to the low-A team actually lowered from 22.6% to 15.4%. Wallace's RC/27 across his three professional stops are 7.08, 4.08, and 16.62 so far this season.

Brett Wallace's production
will get noticed soon
Okay, we're getting a bit too hard core on these small sample size stats. The point it, this catcher/DH looks like he will be a good power hitter in the major leagues. The Astros will either use him and Jason Castro in tandem at the Major League level or trade one of them for pitching or speed. Our good friend, Osh, asked for a post comparing Chris Wallace and Brett Wallace, to see who has more long-term value. In return, I asked him to write a guest post. Hopefully, we'll get something from him soon.

To spur a response, let's begin the discussion. Chris turns 23 in a few days, and Brett turns 25 in August. I guess they could both be considered late bloomers, since they're just about entering their prime. Brett has begun to blossom this year for the Astros. In this young season, he's hitting .324/.400/.451, with 8 walks to 14 strikeouts. By comparison, in his previous experience with the Astros last season, he also walked 8 times, but had 50 strikeouts. Anyway, more to the point, Brett Wallace's minor league numbers were always excellent. I suppose he will be a better Major League hitter than Chris Wallace, but they should both be very good teammates. The Astros of the '90s used to have the "Killer B's" with Jeff Bagwell, Craig Biggio, Lance Berkman, Derek Bell, and others. This decade's Astros will probably count on the Wallace Bros in the middle of their lineups.

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