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Fisher a rising star in Astros' pipeline

MLB.com

ARLINGTON -- The Astros are sitting pretty, with a substantial lead in the American League West and the best record in the Major Leagues. However, there's still more talent waiting in the wings, and manager A.J. Hinch can't help but notice.

Outfielder Derek Fisher has been on a tear for Triple-A Fresno, hitting .376 in the last 30 days, and with four homers in his past five games entering Saturday. He ranks in the top 10 in the Pacific Coast League in every traditional offensive stat except triples and runs scored, and he's one of eight players in the PCL with an on-base percentage of at least .400.

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ARLINGTON -- The Astros are sitting pretty, with a substantial lead in the American League West and the best record in the Major Leagues. However, there's still more talent waiting in the wings, and manager A.J. Hinch can't help but notice.

Outfielder Derek Fisher has been on a tear for Triple-A Fresno, hitting .376 in the last 30 days, and with four homers in his past five games entering Saturday. He ranks in the top 10 in the Pacific Coast League in every traditional offensive stat except triples and runs scored, and he's one of eight players in the PCL with an on-base percentage of at least .400.

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"We're a tough team to crack for all the right reasons, but he certainly has been on everyone's radar and will continue to be while we consider all our options," Hinch said.

Fisher, the Astros' fourth-ranked prospect according to MLBPipeline.com, signed with Houston in 2014. And although the team with the largest division lead doesn't have any glaring holes that need immediate filling, there could be a time down the road when Fisher's talent might be too impressive to keep him down.

"He's got to keep playing well. He's got a lot of skill and many tools that can be weapons up here," Hinch said. "His time's in the not-so-distant future. I don't know what that means. It might be if we need him tomorrow, then we need him tomorrow. If we need him two months from now, we need him two months from now. If we need him in September, we need him in September.

"But he's still in the development stage, and he's making quite an impression. He made quite an impression in Spring Training as well."

Fisher hit .310 in 42 at-bats with Houston in Spring Training and led the Astros with 13 RBIs. He hit two home runs, but struck out 15 times, the third-most K's on the team.

Sam Butler is a reporter for MLB.com based in Texas.

Houston Astros, Derek Fisher