HOUSTON, TX — Astros 2012 Minor League Player of the Year Delino DeShields (2B), former first-round draft pick George Springer (CF) and veteran Major League outfielder Rick Ankiel will be among the Astros non-roster invitees to Spring Training, General Manager Jeff Luhnow announced today.
The Astros agreed to terms on a minor league contract with Ankiel today, which includes an invitation to Spring Training.
Houston currently has 18 non-roster invitees scheduled to attend camp, bringing the overall Spring Training roster total to 58 players (28 pitchers, 30 position players). The 40-man roster is currently at 40. The report dates for Spring Training are Feb. 11 for pitchers and catchers and Feb. 15 for position players.
Both DeShields, 20, and Springer, 23, had outstanding minor league seasons in 2012. DeShields, who was the Astros first pick in the 2010 Draft, set an Astros minor league record with 101 stolen bases combined at Lexington (83 sb) and Lancaster (18 sb). In 111 games at second base for Class A, DeShields hit .298 (131x440) with 96 runs, 22 doubles, five triples, 10 homers, 52 RBI and a .401 on-base percentage prior to being promoted to Class A Lancaster, whom he helped win the California League championship. After the season, DeShields was named to Baseball America’s 2012 All-Star Team for all of minor league baseball.
Springer, the Astros No. 1 draft pick in 2011, hit .318 with 10 triples, 22 HR, 82 RBI and 28 SB with a .955 OPS in just 106 games at Lancaster before being promoted to Corpus Christi (AA), earning California League All-Star honors.
Ankiel, 33, has 67 HR and 253 RBI in 553 games since converting from a pitcher to an outfielder in 2007. He has spent 10 seasons in the Majors overall with the Cardinals, Royals, Braves and most recently the Nationals, where he played his last two seasons (2011-12). Astros manager Bo Porter was the Nationals third base coach over the last two seasons.
Ankiel’s best season was in 2008 while with St. Louis, when he hit .264 with a career-best 25 HR and 71 RBI with a .506 slugging percentage. The former pitcher has one of the strongest arms among outfielders in the Majors, tallying 28 assists in 496 career games in the outfield. He also has hit four pinch-hit HR in his career.
The rest of the Astros 2013 non-roster players are listed below:
LHP Kevin Chapman...24..southpaw reliever was 6-3 in 49 appearances at Double A Corpus Christi with a 2.64 ERA (17ER/58IP) and two saves while tallying 59 strikeouts in 58.0 innings pitched...held opponents to a .226 average...in three career minor league seasons, has totaled 169 K’s in just 138.0 innings with 13 saves...was a 2012 Mid-Season Texas League All-Star...acquired by Houston from KC during Spring Training in 2012 as part of a trade.
OF Trevor Crowe...29...signed by Houston as a minor league free agent on Nov. 26, 2012...has appeared in 245 ML games over parts of three seasons (2009-11), all with Cleveland...stole 20 bases in a career-high 122 games for the Indians in 2010...in 2012, hit .281 in a combined 84 games for three different minor league clubs in the Indians and Angels organizations...selected by the Indians in the first round (14th overall) of the 2005 June Draft.
LHP Sergio Escalona...28...missed the 2012 season due to elbow surgery...in 2011, was 2-1 with a 2.93 ERA for the Astros in 49 relief appearances with 25 strikeouts in 27.2 innings...in his ML career, is 3-1 in 63 relief appearances with a 3.48 ERA...in 195 minor league appearances, has posted a 3.45 ERA with 380 K’s in 378 innings.
RHP Chuckie “C.J.” Fick...27...was 0-1 with a 4.30 ERA in 18 relief appearances for the Astros in 2012...was claimed off waivers by Houston from St. Louis...also made two relief appearances for the Cardinals in 2012...is 24-18 in six minor league seasons with a 3.41 ERA with seven saves.
C Rene Garcia...22...hit .285 in 69 combined games at Class A Lancaster (60g) and Double A Corpus Christi (9g) in 2012...in his five minor league seasons, has thrown out 35% of baserunners attempting to steal.
OF Jake Goebbert...25...spent most of the 2012 season at Double A Corpus Christi, where he hit .304 in 114 games with 23 doubles, six triples, nine home runs and 53 RBI with a .399 on-base percentage...also appeared in 16 games at Triple A Oklahoma City...tallied a career-high 98 RBI at Class A Lexington in 2010...has posted a .285 career average in 456 minor league games.
RHP Edgar Gonzalez...29...was 3-1 in six starts for the Astros in 2012 with a 5.04 ERA (14ER/25IP) with eight walks and 18 strikeouts...was signed by Houston as a minor league free agent during the summer and assigned to Triple A Oklahoma City where he was 1-0 with an 0.69 ERA in two starts before having his contract purchased...has pitched in 113 Major League games in his career (47 starts).
C Jason Jaramillo...30...signed by the Astros to a minor league deal in the offseason...spent parts of three seasons (2009-11) in the Major Leagues with the Pirates, appearing in 119 games (90 starts)...spent the 2012 season in Triple A with the Brewers and A’s organizations...was a second-round selection of the Phillies in the 2004 June Draft.
OF Marc Krauss...25...acquired from Arizona on July 29, 2012 as part of the trade involving 3B Chris Johnson...after the trade, was assigned to Double A Corpus Christi, where he hit .414 (12x29) with five HR and 16 RBI in just seven games...promoted to Triple A Oklahoma City, where he appeared in 22 games...his combined stats for 2012 (includes 104 games at Double A Mobile): .271, 31 doubles, 20 HR, 79 RBI...has averaged 20 HR and 77 RBI of his last three minor league seasons (2010-12)...originally selected by Arizona in the second round of the 2009 June Draft.
3B Brandon Laird...25...in 2012, hit .257 in 17 games for the Astros in Sept-Oct. after being claimed off waivers from the Yankees on Sept. 1...hit first ML HR on Sept. 12 at Pittsburgh...prior to joining the Astros, hit .257 in 130 games at Triple A Scranton Wilkes-Barre with 31 doubles, 15 HR and 77 RBI...in 2010, hit 25 HR with 102 RBI in 138 combined games at Double A Trenton and Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.
OF Che-Hsuan Lin...24...claimed off waivers by Houston from Boston on Oct. 26, 2012...made ML debut with
the Red Sox on April 14, 2012...appeared in nine games overall for the Sox...tallied nine OF assists in 113 games at Triple A Pawtucket while hitting .247 with 15 stolen bases...has 67 OF assists in six minor league seasons, including a career-high 18 in 2009 while with Class A Salem...born in Hwa Lian, Taiwan.
C Carlos Perez...22...hit .318 in 26 games at Class A Lancaster after being acquired from TOR as part of a 10-player trade on July 20, 2012...including his 71 games at Single A Lansing, hit .285 in 97 games overall for the season with 28 doubles, six triples, five home runs and 50 RBI...threw out 14 of 30 attempted basestealers at Lancaster and has thrown out 34% of attempted basestealers in his five minor league seasons.
2B Jose Martinez...27...spent the majority of the 2012 season at Double A Corpus Christi, where he hit .304 in 107 games with 13 HR and 75 RBI...also appeared in 23 games for Triple A Oklahoma City...has played both second base and shortstop throughout his six minor league seasons...had been in the Cardinals system prior to being signed by Houston as a minor league free agent on Feb. 16, 2012.
C Chris Wallace...24...spent most of the 2012 season at Double A Corpus Christi, hitting .251 in 63 games with five HR and 29 RBI...also hit .270 (10x37) in 15 games at Triple A Oklahoma City...had fine 2011 season, with 20 HR and 78 RBI with a .507 slugging pct. in 102 combined games at Single A Lexington (66g) and Corpus Christi (36g)...selected by Houston in the 16th round of the 2010 Draft out of the University of Houston.
RHP Josh Zeid...25...spent the 2012 season at Double A Corpus Christi, where he was 2-0 in 47 relief appearances with a 5.59 ERA...had one of the top strikeouts-per-innings pitched ratios in the Texas League with 66 K’s in 56.1 innings of work...finished the season strong, posting a 1.10 ERA (1ER/8.2IP) in his final seven appearances...is 20-13 in 140 career minor league appearances (39 starts) with 11 saves and 320 strikeouts in 323.0 innings of work...pitched for Team Isreal in the World Baseball Classic qualifying round.