The Houston Astros have placed shortstop Jed Lowrie, on the 15-day Disabled List with a ligament tear in his right thumb. The tear will require surgery and will sideline him until after the All-Star Break. The announcement was made by Astros General Manager Jeff Luhnow.
Lowrie, who injured the thumb while sliding into home plate last night, was off to a solid start to the season. He was hitting .300 (18×60) with four home runs and 10 RBI, and ranked fifth in the American League in on-base percentage (.432), seventh in OPS (.999) and ninth in slugging (.567).
Would Jeff Luhnow reach down into Houston’s rich farm system and bring up their top prospect, 20-year-old shortstop Carlos Correa, who looks like a young Alex Rodriguez without the baggage, to fill in for Lowrie until after the All-Star Break and then perhaps beyond in some role with the Astros.
Correa who was drafted in the first round of the 2012 Draft (1st overall) is off to a hot start this season, hitting .400 with five home runs and 22 RBIs, with a slash line of .400/.468/.800. He’s playing stellar defense and he’s already played in 246 minor league games in his career, hitting .315, with 23 HRs, 177 RBIs, 74 doubles and 12 triples.
When you watch him play this month, he’s clearly the best player on the field. Among the MLB.com’s Top 100 Prospects, Correa ranks first in; doubles (10), RBIs (21), slugging (.735) and OPS (1.175) and he ranks second with a .382 batting average, suggesting that Correa’s performance on the field would warrant some consideration to make the leap to Houston.
To take Lowrie’s roster spot, the Astros have recalled utility infielder Jonathan Villar from Triple A Fresno. After beginning the year on the Astros’ Opening Day roster, Villar was optioned to Fresno last Wednesday. He played in three games for the Grizzlies, hitting .385 (5-for-13) with a double, two RBI and a stolen base. Villar has a perfect opportunity to showcase his considerable talents.
If Villar falters, or the Astros see their grip on first place beginning to slip away, one has to wonder how long Luhnow will wait before he calls Correa, (perhaps Luhnow’s best draft pick ever) to the rescue.
For now, Astros fans will have to wait for Carlos Correa.