Things haven’t gone according to plan for Mark Appel since the Astros made him the No. 1 overall pick in the 2013 draft. Coming out of Stanford he was supposed to have top-of-the-rotation potential and be close to MLB-ready, but instead his prospect stock has dipped dramatically and they’re just now promoting him to Triple-A.
Appel started 20 total games at Double-A between this season and last season, posting a 4.05 ERA and 87/36 K/BB ratio in 102 innings. And he was even worse at Single-A.
At age 23 there’s still plenty of time for Appel to get on track and fulfill his potential, but the Astros were probably hoping he’d be in the majors by now and whenever he does arrive it’ll likely come with middle-of-the-rotation expectations at this point.