Astros GM says top prospect Jon Singleton is “on deck” for a call-up

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Jon Singleton is thriving at Triple-A and the Astros are getting horrendous production at first base, so it sounds like Houston may soon be ready to call up the 22-year-old top prospect.

Singleton, who was acquired from the Phillies in the Hunter Pence trade and ranked as a consensus top-100 prospect in each of the past four seasons, is hitting .293 with 12 homers and a 1.030 OPS in 38 games at Triple-A and he’s made good strides with his strikeout-to-walk ratio as well.

So when might he arrive in Houston? Here’s what general manager Jeff Luhnow told Brian McTaggart of MLB.com:

Singleton’s progressing. We see him as a guy who’s close to being able to contribute at the major league level. We’re excited. We’ve all seen the reaction the fans had at bringing up prospects like [George] Springer and last year with [Jarred] Cosart and we have more coming. I would say Singleton is on deck.

As usual service time considerations could play a part in Singleton’s call-up and late June would clear the various hurdles in terms of avoiding Super Two arbitration status down the road, but it might be tough to wait that long if he keeps posting a 1.000 OPS and the Astros’ first basemen keep hitting below .200.

Sandy Alderson thinks Tim Tebow will play in the major leagues

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Based on his track record so far I don’t think Tim Tebow deserves to play in the major leagues on the merits. Not even close. But then again, I’m not the general manager of the New York Mets, so I don’t get a say in that.

Sandy Alderson is the general manager, so his say carries a lot of weight. To that end, here’s what he said yesterday:

Noting the Tebow experiment has “evolved” into something greater, general manger Sandy Alderson on Sunday said, “I think he will play in the major leagues.”

To be fair, Alderson is pretty up front about the merits of Tebow’s presumed advancement to the bigs at some point. He didn’t say that it’s because Tebow has played his way up. He said this:

“He is great for the team, he is great for baseball, he was phenomenal for minor league baseball last year. The notion that he should have been excluded from the game because he is not coming through the traditional sources, I think is crazy. This is entertainment, too. And he quietly entertains us . . . He benefits the Mets because of how he conducts himself. He’s a tremendous representative of the organization.”

I take issue with Alderson’s comment about people thinking he shouldn’t be in the game because of his background. Most people who have been critical of the Tebow experiment have been critical because there is no evidence that he’s a good enough baseball player to be given the opportunities he’s been given. I mean, he advanced to high-A last year despite struggling at low-A and he’s going to start at Double-A this year in all likelihood despite struggling in high-A. If he does make the bigs, it will likewise come despite struggles in Double-A and maybe Triple-A too.

That said: I don’t mind if they promote Tebow all the way up as long as they’re being honest about why they’re doing it and aren’t trying to get everyone on board with some cockamamie idea that Tebow belongs on the baseball merits. If they do put him in the majors it’ll be because he’s a draw and a good promotion and because people generally like him and he’s not hurting anyone and I can’t take issue with that.

That’s basically what Alderson is saying here and if that’s the case, great. I mean, not great, because Tebow in the bigs will likely also mean that the Mets aren’t playing meaningful games, but great in the sense of “fine.” Baseball is entertainment too. No sense in pretending it isn’t.