Whether or not Jon Singleton becomes a major league star, both the Astros and the player have made history and laid the framework to avoid that 2019-2020 bottleneck.
Did the Astros hold the promotion over his head to get him to sign the potential eight-year, $35 million deal? Who knows? Who cares? We’ll find out if they did, but at this point, it really doesn’t matter.
Singleton will be at first base in an Astros’ uniform and will add to a lineup that continues to morph and transform right in front of our very eyes.
As I suggested a few weeks ago, the Astros could improve throughout the season by adding just one prospect or veteran each month of the season. In April, Houston added George Springer and Collin McHugh. The team added Tony Sipp and Kyle Farnsworth in May. Now, as June dawns, Singleton solidifies a first base position that has plagued the organization since Lance Berkman left in 2010.
Singleton’s first five years are guaranteed at $10 million. For the rest of the deal, he’ll have to earn his keep. What a concept! Somewhere along year six or seven, if he’s worth his salt, pressure will likely come to bear to negotiate an extension.
With the addition of Singleton, the Astros’ infield now averages just over 23 years of age. Matt Dominguez is the old man, turning 25 later in the season.
If manager Bo Porter continues his pledge to “…protect them (young guys) from themselves”, expect to see Singleton in the six hole come Tuesday. Eventually, though, it makes absolute sense to see this lineup:
One other thought: With the addition of Singleton and Springer and other position apparently “locked up” for the foreseeable future, the Astros are beginning to create blocks. When’s the last time a minor league player in the Houston organization was blocked?
Effectively now, a catcher, first baseman, second baseman, third baseman and two outfield spots are firm for the Astros. Houston sent down a hot pitcher just this week. If and when the Astros add Jesse Crain, Matt Albers, Asher Wojciechowski, Alex White, Michael Foltynewicz, Domingo Santana or Austin Wates, the blocks may become the big issue on Jeff Luhnow’s plate.
There are several questions that remain:
- Where do you believe he should hit in the order?
- Who’s the next promotion-of-the-month?
- Who’s the next player Houston should lock up?
- Can this team meet Jim Crane’s .500 expectation in 2014?