Forrest Whitley 2019 Top 100 MLB Prospects Stock Watch

Image credit: Forrest Whitley, Arizona Fall League All-Star Game (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)

This is part of a series highlighting several prospects in our 2019 Top 100 Prospects midseason update. To see the full rankings, click here

Forrest Whitley, RHP, Astros

Rank: 4  
Preseason: 5

STOCK is headed: Neutral

Whitley opened the season as the top pitching prospect in the game and entered the halfway point in the middle of one of the most disappointing seasons. 

Before landing on the injured list with shoulder fatigue, Whitley made eight appearances (five starts) at Triple-A Round Rock and went 0-3, 12.21 with 29 strikeouts, 15 walks and nine home runs allowed in 24.1 innings.

Beyond the poor results, evaluators have consistently said that Whitley, who began the year as the youngest player in the Pacific Coast League, has displayed an immaturity on the mound so caustic that it has obfuscated his still-bright ceiling. 

“His stuff was way down. In spring training, I saw a lot of stuff to like,” one scout said. “He looked great and like he was ready, and the kid I saw yesterday was a kid.”

After a rough go in the hitter-friendly PCL, Whitley was sent back to the Astros’ minor league complex in Florida to work through his injury and get back on track. Once he returns, Whitley, a first-round pick in 2016, will need to do a lot of work to erase the poor first impression he made in Triple-A.

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