Prospects on Deck: Astros – Devin Conn, RHP
The defending World Series Champion Houston Astros and all the other 29 teams are gearing up for a run at a World Series title. But first it starts with Spring Training, which is just over a week away from starting. Most teams will have their top guys playing in the World Baseball Classic which will open the door for other players within their organization to have an opportunity to compete in big league camp. Some of these players are part of the Non-Roster Invitees hoping for a chance to impress the coaching staff enough to make the big league squad, or at least be considered for a spot sometime this summer.
One player that stands out to me from that group is right handed pitcher Devin Conn.
Conn was drafted by the Astros in the 19th round of the 2018 draft out of Nova Southeastern University, Fort Lauderdale, FL. The University so far has had three alumni make it to the majors, J.D. Martinez, Mike Fiers and Miles Mikolas.
In 2018, with Nova Southeastern, Conn was 8-1, with 128 strikeouts through 85.1 innings spanning 14 starts. He experienced his first summer of pro ball with the Tri-City Astros in the NY Penn League that same summer and he finished the season with a 2.65 ERA, with 13 strikeouts through 17 innings of mostly in relief.
The Astros then sent Conn in 2019 to start with the Quad City River Bandits (Class A Full) and in 33 games in relief, he posted a 3.99 ERA, earned five saves, and had 67 strikeouts through 58.2 innings while opponents batted just .200 against him. On July 22, 2019, he was sent to Fayetteville Woodpeckers (High A) for a spot appearance, and threw three innings, allowing one run on three hits and one strikeout.
As we all know, the 2020 season was canceled due to the Covid-19 pandemic and it gave all minor league ball payers a year off from competing on the field and what they did with that time could determine opportunity on the field. Conn just kept on trucking.
After the break, Conn was sent to pitch with the Ashville Tourists in The Sally League and in 13 appearances, he was 1-1, with 22 strikeouts in 18.1 innings, as opponents batted just .191 against him. On June 18, he was promoted to the Corpus Christ Hooks (AA) and was nearly unhittable early on as he had five straight games without giving up a hit or a run from June 25 to July 11th. Then after a few rough outings, Conn was able to finish the season keeping his ERA at 2.67 through 21 games, while striking out 31 batters in 33.2 innings pitched.
This past season, Conn started the year in Double A and through 35 relief appearances he was 7-3, with a 2.92 ERA, striking out 46 batters in 52.1 innings. On June 28, he was promoted for his stellar performances to the Sugar Land Space Cowboys (AAA) and on his first night he tossed two shutout innings. In total he appeared in 11 games, posting a 3.86 through 14 innings.
Now in 2023, Conn will be competing in Big League camp with an opportunity to showcase his skills and maybe the powers that be will reward him with a spot on the roster. Either way, he is on his way to making his big league debut, it’s just a matter of when the Astros make that call. Hopefully it will be this summer.
Devin Conn strikes out 2 in a perfect 9th for his 4th save. pic.twitter.com/DLgiH17UkG
— Corpus Christi Hooks (@cchooks) June 17, 2022
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