Former Houston Astros Prospect Retires From Baseball

This former Houston Astros farmhand was, at one time, thought of as a potential Major League player.
Mar 14, 2023; West Palm Beach, Florida, USA;  Houston Astros right fielder Justin Dirden.
Mar 14, 2023; West Palm Beach, Florida, USA; Houston Astros right fielder Justin Dirden. / Jim Rassol-USA TODAY Sports
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Justin Dirden, who joined the Houston Astros organization in 2020 and the Milwaukee Brewers organization this season, has retired.

The Brewers’ Double-A affiliate, the Biloxi Shuckers, announced the transaction on Monday.

Dirden, a 26-year-old left-handed hitter, slashed .177/.239/.241/.480 with four RBI in 24 games with the Shuckers, who play in the Southern League.

The Brewers signed Dirden on April 16 after the Astros released him from their Triple-A affiliate in Sugar Land.

The O’Fallon, Mo., native went undrafted in 2020, as MLB held just a five-round draft that year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Dirden signed with Houston out of Southeast Missouri.

They assigned him to Class A Fayetteville to start the 2021 season and he eventually earned a promotion to High-A Asheville Tourists. Combined, he slashed .274/.397/.537 with 15 home runs and 58 RBI over 83 games.

That earned him a promotion to Double-A Corpus Christi to start the 2022 season, and his play eventually landed him with Sugar Land in August. With the Hooks and the Space Cowboys, he slashed .302/.384/.558 with 40 doubles, 24 home runs, 101 RBI, and 12 stolen bases. His 40 doubles tied for tops in minor league baseball with Chicago Cubs prospect Matt Mervis.

Dirden looked poised for a shot at the Majors in 2023 but a hamstring injury stole some time and his batting average plummeted to .231, as did his power numbers (10 home runs, 42 RBI).

After going through spring training with the Astros, he was released and signed with the Brewers.  


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Matthew Postins

MATTHEW POSTINS

Matthew Postins is an award-winning sports journalist who covers the Texas Rangers, Philadelphia Phillies, Chicago Cubs and Houston Astros for Sports Illustrated/FanNation. He also covers he Big 12 for Heartland College Sports.